"We Give People Hope": Nigerian Man Trains Thousands of Africans to Acquire Business Skills
- A forward-thinking Nigerian, Phillip Udeochu, founded Portfolio 9 to lift people out of abject poverty and empower them with the help of Meta
- Obianuju Chinenye Aningwu and Unwanaaba Si Koko Philip who are both beneficiaries of the initiative are doing well as entrepreneurs
- Meta partnered with Legit.ng to spotlight communities under its I Am Because We Are campaign
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A Nigerian man, Phillip Udeochu, has created a platform called Portfolio 9 to help entrepreneurs access funds and training. He said he wanted to help business people at the grassroots to become better.
The idea to start the organisation which has been powered by Meta Community was birthed when his family had a traumatic experience. In his words:
"After a traumatic experience when my family was attacked by four boys in 2018, I decided to start something to fight poverty and employment."
Portfolio 9's clear mandate
With a solution-provider mindset, Phillip believed that when people are properly engaged, they would not have the time for social vices. Portfolio 9 empowers its members with sustaining economic skills and funds them.
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"Portfolio 9 Community has a clear mandate, which is to reduce poverty, unemployment and vocational skill shortages, by designing and delivering entrepreneurship to the ‘Digital Doorsteps’ of people at the Bottom of the Pyramid (BOP) using social media (Facebook)."
Community members helped by Portfolio 9
Obianuju Chinenye Aningwu is a testament to the effectiveness of Portfolio 9. The owner of Allyama Tailoring and Fashion House said that she heard about the digital platform on Facebook after a friend introduced her. In her words:
"...I've learnt a lot of things: how to make clothes and how to manage money and now I am standing on my own. I can manage my staff, I can manage my money and I can make good clothes."
Unwanaaba stated that they were different people aside from her who Portfolio 9 had given hope. She said:
"You see somebody who didn't have any hope of starting a business... and they get a machine."
How people are funded at Portfolio 9
On how members' business ideas are funded, Portfolio 9 founder stated that their mentees are connected to loan and grants opportunities in such a way that their chances of getting them are higher. He said:
"We help our members connect to funding opportunities everywhere... We are exposing over 600,000 people in Africa to business management and over 200,000 vocational skills. "
Another beneficiary of Portfolio 9 is Unwanaaba Si Koko Philip who now runs her restaurant. She said she was trained on how to start and manage her business.
Meta's significance to Portfolio 9
Philip said that managing that large pool of members would not have been possible without the features Meta Community provides. He added that the Admin Assist on the platform runs on autopilot and can run a community even when the manager is asleep.
According to him, Meta's "Insights" is another way Facebook (Meta) is helping community managers like him to have a feel of what his members are talking about as a way to make informed decisions. He said:
"Facebook groups by design have in-built tools needed to help community managers/founders target, attract, manage and maintain interactions and engagements within a safe "learning and sharing" space online; pulling people together around specific visions/values, and uniting them. In our case, the factor is entrepreneurship."
Another source of funding for Portfolio 9
Apart from linking their members to grant opportunities, Portfolio 9 operates a Find Me Feed Me initiative where businesses at the grassroots are selected and given capital. He revealed:
"We find a business at the grassroots and we all contribute and fund that business."
Philip is hopeful of a future where people are more financially empowered to support themselves and their families.
Lady empowered mother & opened shop for her
Meanwhile, Legit.ng earlier reported that a kind Nigerian, Lynda Iroegbu, on Monday, February 14, 2022 revealed how she spent her Valentine's Day. She made a stranger she met in December 2021 smile.
Lynda revealed that the woman was a mother of five kids who was battling life challenges. Along the line, two of her kids died.
The petty business she was running was taken away from her by thugs. To lessen her burden, the kind lady opened a makeshift shop for her.