A young Naga quit a comfortable, secure job to get the youth of his region aim high on money and peace
Scarce job opportunities force youngsters to migrate from their hometowns. Neichute Doulo has stopped almost 15,000 people to migrate from his home state of Nagaland by helping them to become entrepreneurs.
Neichute himself had a very secure life. He was lecturer of economics in Baptist College, Kohima, Nagaland. He left his job to give youngsters a better life and bring them to the mainstream. After leaving his job in 2000, he launched Entrepreneurs Associates (EA) to train Nagaland’s youth in basic skills and provide startup capital and marketing network for initiating small enterprises. He promoted entrepreneurship and peace building in northeastern India.
The Naga movement for independence from India has hampered economic development in this region. He changed the mindset of Naga people towards work and their contribution to the economy of the country. After more than a decade of efforts, EA has successfully launched the first generation of Naga and Manipuri entrepreneurs. This has made local markets vibrant, increased local production rate and generated local jobs. Doulo says, “I believe that this will also help the northeast region to become an asset to the country. It will not be seen as a liability and a region of problems but of opportunities and solutions”.
EA is his baby and he started this organisation with a meager amount. He remembers: “When we started, 13 of us pooled in our money and we started our journey with an initial capital of
We expanded it by making greeting cards and selling leather belts and bags, which helped us to raise a few lakh rupees”. Now, EA provides financing at 16 percent interest to youth to start their own small businesses. The organisation has expanded its services to Manipur as well. In year 2014, EA received approval from RBI as a lending institution. It has distributed around Rs 150 crore of loans. The best part of EA’s business is 100 per cent recovery.
“It was a big challenge initially to motivate people. We have been able to create 15,000 jobs, either directly or indirectly, in Nagaland and Manipur,” Doulo said. Now, more than 2,700 enterprises are running successfully and over 3,500 farmers are cultivating their life and land both with the direct support from EA.
As government from other states clamour to invite EA to train their youth and launch entrepreneurial activities in their state, EA’s future looks bright. Doulo, through his tireless efforts, has not only generated jobs for the youth, but has also brought peace and stability in the region, which has been convulsed with violence since decades.
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