The Department of Youth and Culture, which has relatively been dormant, this year decided to sponsor 12 exhibitors to showcase their talents at the country’s most anticipated show, the Botswana Consumer Fair, currently running at the Ditshupo Hall in Fairgrounds.
The stalls display a varied array of goods, from fashion design, artwork, metalwork, decoratory products, signatory, engraving and other types of creative work in which the youth are basically gifted in.
The department, which has many missions of motivation and inspiration, one of which is to promote and preserve national culture and to ensure youth development, has used the same criteria they have been using for years to expose Batswana’s talents to the rest of the country.
The department is not new to sponsoring young talent as they are familiar with exhibitions such as the Women’s Exposition, the BOCCIM Trade Fair and the Northern Trade Fair.
The Department richly boosts of the famous out of school youth grants and has 32 regional offices from which they picked 12 of the best projects related to the constituency they were developed in.
The Youth and Culture Public Relations Officer, Thuso Palai, said that they have specific criteria that they use to ensure that the Batswana youth use the opportunities granted to them to expose their talents.
“The ministry has granted us specific guidelines to follow when choosing the best of the best to represent their regions so as to expose the exhibitors’ to the profitable ventures market,” said Palai.
All that the participants had to bring, he said, was their creative works and all expenses were paid by the department.
“The best thing about the Youth and Culture help scheme is that we offer grants and not loans. Basically, we empower them in a way that is beneficial to them,” says Palai.
The out of school youth grant is meant for young people who have finished school and who are in need of help to start their own businesses. The department gives grants to youths after the submission of a carefully planned out business plan.
“We try our best to inspire and motivate the youth to take on business ventures, with us monitoring and advising them all the way,” says Palai.
The Botswana Trade Fair started on the 25th of August and will be open to the public until the 31st.
The famous local show, Mokaragana, is being screened live from the Fair. Gate One tickets cost P35 with the back gate costing P20.