On October 6, IPA Kenya, alongside Kenya’s State Department for Youth Affairs (SDY), Micro and Small Enterprises Authority (MSEA), and the World Bank, hosted the dissemination of the COVID 19, Gender and Youth Employment Study. Researchers Abla Safir and Maria Hernandez-de-Benito presented on the gendered impacts of COVID-19 on microbusinesses in Kenya and early results on the impact of Kenya Youth Employment Opportunities Project (KYEOP) interventions like business grants and business development services. Elizabeth Koshy from IPA’s Small and Medium Enterprise Program presented the evidence synthesis, Supporting Women-Led Businesses in Low and Middle-Income Countries through the COVID-19 Crisis and Beyond, in the hybrid-format event.
The event was attended by a range of partners and stakeholders across the enterprise development and gender inclusion sectors in Kenya. The TVET Authority, the State Department for Devolution, the State Department for Trade, the State Department for Labour, the State Department for Gender, the National Gender and Equality Commission, the National Industrial Training Authority, and the Kenya National Chamber of Commerce were some of the stakeholders in attendance. In addition to the dissemination, the event provided a platform for stakeholders to discuss and outline how the study’s results and the evidence review would inform their policy processes. In a session moderated by gender expert, Dr. Darmaris Parsitau, MSEA, SDY, and the State Department for Gender outlined the applicability of these results in informing their planned policy initiatives. For starters, MSEA defined the results as being particularly useful in the operationalization of the MSE levy. Additionally, the State Department for Gender referenced recommendations made in the evidence review on improving work-life balance and business performance by providing access to reliable childcare arrangements as being relevant in the formulation of the draft Unpaid Care and Domestic Work Policy. The dissemination event served as a segway towards the sector-wide roundtable that IPA Women Work’s Entrepreneurship and Skilling Initiative intends to host in December 2021.