In Junior High School, Jacqueline Baidoo developed a passion for agriculture. Today, the 26-year old, who lives in Brofoyedru – Santasi in the Ashanti region of Ghana, is the CEO of Grace Mushrooms Limited.
Recycling sawdust and rice husk, Jacqueline has been growing organic fresh mushrooms to make drinks and confectionaries to boost the immune system in the fight against COVID-19.
In May, SNV hosted the GrEEn COVID-19 Innovation Challenge aimed at supporting entrepreneurs and developers with innovative ideas and solution to the coronavirus (COVID19) pandemic. It formed part of activities of the Boosting Green Employment and Enterprise Opportunities in Ghana (GrEEn) Project, which SNV has been implementing with the UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF). The COVID-19 Innovation Challenge was organised together with I-Code in the Western region and Kumasi Hive in Ashanti region: 49 applications were handed in by young entrepreneurs and 4 winners were selected.
One of them was Jacqueline.
“The support has really helped me develop a good business plan and a good business plan is very helpful for the survival of every business. Now, I am able to know my key partners and I am able to know the various segments of customers I have to reach out to," Jacqueline said.
For Jacqueline, green entrepreneurship means skills development for youth:
“Green entrepreneurship is where young people, especially, are able to develop their skills and are able to employ more people and help solve problems. For me, green entrepreneurship has helped me to be employed and also to employ other people,” she added.
The Boosting Green Employment and Enterprise Opportunities in Ghana (GrEEn) project is a four-year action from the European Union, the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Ghana, SNV Netherlands Development Organisation and the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF). The project aims at creating greater economic and employment opportunities for youth, women and returning migrants by promoting and supporting sustainable, green businesses in two selected regions in Ghana: Ashanti and Western. GrEEn is implemented under the European Union Emergency Trust Fund (EUTF) for Africa with a total contribution of EUR 20,600,000.