UNESCO and CEPS designated two winners for the 3rd edition of « Tremplin »

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© UNESCO
13 April 2016

Mr. Laurain Hugues Victor ESSONO NGOUA and Ms. Dominique Nancy BALLE are the two young Gabonese entrepreneurs, who are designated, among 14 selected candidates, as laureates of the 3rd edition of the Global « Tremplin », a support mechanism for youth’s social entrepreneurship and culture of peace in Africa, in 8 April, 2016, during a solemn ceremony at Méridien RE-NDAMA Hotel in Libreville (Gabon). 

After the call for candidates launched on January 12, 2016 by the Center for Strategic and Prospective Studies (CEPS in French), supported by the local representation of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in Gabon, the 2016 edition of Global « Tremplin », was presented on April 8 in an official ceremony that brought together several personalities including members of Government, Parliament, Diplomatic Corps, as well as representatives of international and non-governmental organizations.

Mr. Jean-Patrick EHOUMAN, laureate of the first edition of Global « Tremplin », organized in 2013 and held in Côte d’Ivoire, was also present at the ceremony.

The partners of the event are Phoenix Capital, Ogar Group, Airtel-Gabon, Ecobank-Gabon, Gabon Télécom, SEEG and Economie + Gabon. All were represented at the ceremony.

The project submitted by Mr. Laurain Victor ESSONO NGOUA, for which he was distinguished, is about the creation of a platform where students could get information related to training programs and the corresponding opportunities. To that end, each potential user supplies to the platform his/her level of education, experiences and specifies the field in which the person wants to work. The platform uses the information provided to propose training programs and schools delivering such programs.

The jury saw in this project an undeniable social impact because it specifically tackles an important issue confronting students, the lack of school and professional guidance. By addressing this important problem of educational and professional guidance, this projects contributes to the development of human capital.

As to the project submitted by Ms. Dominique Nancy BALLE, she intended to respond to needs identified by thousands of African families: household lighting and access to energy. Besides the expected results that this project will bring about, the judges also considered its proposed environmental approaches of solar solutions. When considering the socio-economic situation of many families, this project brings about an innovative and immediate solution to home lighting, while at the same time promoting eco-responsibility. As for the first project cited above, the jury selected this one because of its potential to address a real social need. There are statistics showing that « two out of three Africans have no access to modern and reliable energy resources. » Ms. BALLE’s aim is to help finding solutions to the energy challenges in Africa.

Additionally, the jury considers this project beneficial to sustainable development since it allows each home to afford renewable energy rather than relying on fossil fuels.

Each laureate has received 7.500.000 F CFA, which is about 12.236 dollars, as well as coaching in management for one year. The coaching is provided by Junior Achievement Gabon, a non-governmental organization dedicated to economic and social education for youth.


Family photo of officials and of leaureates of « Tremplin »
© UNESCO

In his speech, Mr. Vincenzo FAZZINO, Head and UNESCO Representative to Gabon, stressed that « While encouraging entrepreneurial spirit in general, “Tremplin” promotes culture of peace by being more attentive to the creation of social wealth, which is the soul of economic and financial wealth, whose indicator is community development through strengthened social development ». He concluded his address by highlighting that by awarding “Tremplin”, « we expressed our faith in African youth in general and especially young Gabonese as agent of change and progress of our society. We recognize in these young people the spirit of innovation and self-empowerment for communities development and we are celebrating for it today. Through these young candidates who responded to the call for applications for «Tremplin » (…), we can see an Africa who has faith in herself, an Africa trying to build peace that we will celebrate. »

The solemn awards ceremony for the 2016 edition of Global « Tremplin » was under the patronage of Mrs Madeleine BERRE, Ministry of Commerce, of small and medium enterprises, of crafts, of Tourism and of Services Development.