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Meet YPARD Mentee: Rozi Chisowa

At the age of 33, Rozi Chisowa a Bachelor of Journalism graduate from the University of Malawi is now living her dream. First born child in a family of four, Rose worked with several institutions before realizing that the money she was getting from her work place was not enough and so she quit and started doing business.

In October 2013, she made the switch from RSA business to animal production with four piglets which after 4 months multiplied to 45 pigs. She later sold 40 of her piglets and used the profits to buy layers chickens, broilers, rabbits and goats.

“Currently I am into piggery, rabbits, ducks and chickens keeping and again I am growing several crops using the organic manure I get from my farm animals”

Position:  Farmer

Education: Bachelor of Journalism, University of Malawi

Country: Malawi

Her business has not been exempt from challenges. She recounts how at some point she lost 1000 broilers because she could not afford to employ qualified personnel to look after her farm while she was away. In addition, the lack of easy access to credit facilities from financial institutions as well as the high interest rates, and the unwillingness of the financial institutions to finance farming as a business has hindered her business growth.

“I got a vision of where I want to be in the next three years to come but I don’t have enough capital to make my dreams come true. With the online mentoring program for young women entrepreneurs and my mentor, I hope by the end of the training I will be able to come up with a business plan. And again I expect the program to help me with marketing strategies of my products.”

I quit my job and opted for farming as I realized that there is money in farming not only in the offices. I have also learnt that one’s background should not stop you from achieving your goals. We just have to dream big and believe in ourselves. In addition, I have realized that Agriculture is an engine for mother Malawi’s social and economic growth. It is difficult to develop a country without investing in social and economic agricultural programmes. My observation is one can’t go wrong with a career in agriculture as such I would encourage more youth to join the agriculture sector

I would encourage my fellow youth to not only think of getting a job after graduating from school, instead they should think differently by creating jobs. Above all I would like to urge institutions and government to help youth who are showing interest in farming by providing with them financial support.

The Government should include entrepreneurship as a subject on its own so that after finishing school students should not only rely on formal education to get employment by government and other institutions but create jobs for themselves.  Its high time schools curricula accommodate entrepreneurship. And again it has come to my observation that gender is still a problem in most countries, generally people or institutions do not believe that women entrepreneurs can make it in business.

Most importantly, it is my desire to see more youth joining the farming industry because there is also money in farming