YOUNG entrepreneur Ms Evangelista Chekera recently raised the country's flag high after her chick brooder innovation came first at the WomENG African Innovation Fellowship (AIF) awards held in Uganda.
She won a fully-funded trip to attend the Global Grant Challenge in the United Kingdom in September.
Ms Chekera is among 15 youth entrepreneurs from around the country who received a green innovation grant of US$5 000 each to implement their ideas under the Green Innovation Hub Facility Phase II project in April, before being selected to be part of the WomENG African Innovation Fellowship (AIF) that was held in Kampala.
Government is pushing for innovation hubs which are meant to bridge the gap between theoretical knowledge and industrial skills among the youths.
In an interview, Ms Chekera said although she has no engineering background, her chick brooder innovation would go a long way in contributing towards the attainment of Vision 2030 and urged other youths to be innovative and create employment and not wait to be employed.
"From June 2 to 5, I was part of 25 Africans selected to be part of the WomENG African Innovation Fellowship (AIF) that was held in Uganda," she said.
"This was a four-day intense training with facilitators from all over Africa teaching on both personal and business development. Although I have no engineering background, my chick brooder innovation came first.
"I won a fully-funded trip to attend the Global Grant Challenge in September 2019 to be held in London. I will not only be representing Zimbabwe, but Africa as a whole. My noble innovation will contribute towards the attainment of Vision 2030.
"My father resigned from his job when I was 10 in order to pursue his dream of becoming a farmer.
"It was at this age that I became involved in the family poultry project. My duties included breeding chicks from day-old to 14 days. I had to observe the chicks during this period and notify my father if I noticed abnormal chick behaviour. In September 2016, Passion Poultry was born to provide poultry brooding and processing equipment for small-scale farmers who did not have access to such. We design, manufacture and distribute poultry slaughtering cones that makes slaughtering birds easier."
Ms Chekera said as a small start-up in Zimbabwe, she has been getting advisory services from Boost Fellowship, Micah Foundation, Udugu Institution, Act in Africa, Zimbabwe Farmers' Union and the Ministry of Youth Sport, Arts and Recreation.