Posts Tagged 'gender equality'

Teach a Woman to Fish & Go Global, and You’ll Feed Her & Her Business for a Lifetime

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Everyone knows the classic adage, “Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.”

But wegg® knows, “Give a woman a fish, and you feed her for a day. Teach a woman to fish and go global, and you feed her and her business for a lifetime.” This idea is the essence of wegg®’s mission: “to educate, inspire and nurture women business owners and entrepreneurs worldwide on how to go global, so they can run healthier businesses and create a new future for themselves, their families and their community.”

Our goal as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization is to teach the women entrepreneurs of the world how to take their businesses global, and we are always thrilled to hear about the triumphs of women entrepreneurs around the world. Recently, we read a New York Times article covering the reform of Rwanda’s fishing industry, from an exclusively male world, to a community of women entrepreneurs. Author Shannon Sims describes the change,

“The intense physical work and danger that comes with fishing on Lake Kivu, along with reinforcement from traditional gender roles, kept women from fishing for generations, tending to backyard farms instead. But in post-genocide Rwanda, that seems to be changing. Today, women form an essential part of the national market for Lake Kivu fish. Besides fishing on the lake at night, women also gather along the shores in the early morning to buy the fish the fisherwomen deliver. They then haul those fish home to their small villages, or sell the fish to cooperatives.”

This newfound emphasis of women on the business side of Rwanda’s fish economy has inspired the development of Projet Pêche, a fishing cooperative made up of 87 women, in Kibuye, a town along the banks of Lake Kivu. This collective has had a supremely positive impact on the lives of Rwandan women. Just listen to one woman, Bonifrida Mukabideri’s, account,

“A lot of women have used the cooperatives to fight poverty. Here in Rwanda we now have the idea that women and men can do every job…Now a woman can say: ‘I can build a house by myself. I can look after my family properly. And even if my husband dies, we can live a better life.’”

wegg® would love to help global women entrepreneurs like Mukabideri feed themselves, their families, and their communities for a lifetime…by fostering an expanding global business that thrives for generations. For more information on the resources wegg® has to offer women entrepreneurs, check out our education page.

 

Why Are There So Few Women Entrepreneurs in Rwanda?

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A 2014 census report conducted by the National Institute of Statistics in Rwanda,  revealed that only 26.8 percent of sole proprietorship establishments are owned by women, compared to 73.2 percent owned by men.

What are the reasons for this imbalance?

In Donah Mbabazi’s article for “The New Times,” she shares a telling quote from the first Vice Chairperson of the Private Sector Federation Chamber for Women, Sarah Kirenga. Kirenga speaks to the challenges that Rwandan women, and all women, can face when it comes to business:
“The number one challenge women in business face is the fear of failure. Failure is a very real possibility in any business venture, but when it comes to women in business; fear to fail becomes a great concern to growing the business, hence, women are afraid to take up big risks. I believe you need to have massive failure to have massive success, you may need 100 ‘nos’ to get one ‘yes,’ but that one ‘yes’ will make you more successful tomorrow than you were today.”

Further in the article, the CEO of the Rwandan stock exchange, Pierre-Celestin Rwabukumba, cites Rwanda’s social climate as a cause for the lack of female participation in business: “It’s because of the general patriarchal kind of environment we have been living in for decades. Business doesn’t change because it is done in the same society.”

This poses an interesting question: Do social norms surrounding gender equality have to change in order for patterns in business to evolve? Or would change in entrepreneurship affect society? What do you think roadblocks women from achieving their full potential as entrepreneurs? What can women do for themselves to get in the game?

Read Mbabazi’s article, and her account of some solutions to the inequity in Rwandan business, here.

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Why go global?  How do you start?  Where can you find customers?  How do you get paid?  Find out these answers and learn other best-kept secrets to expanding a business globally. 

JOIN us for our first weggchat™ (#weggchat) Wednesday, August 8 from 11:00 a.m. — 12:00 p.m. (noon) Central time on Take Your Business Global! and facilitated by Laurel Delaney, President of WEGG and founder of GlobeTrade.com.  Laurel will field questions and add insights on how to take a business global.  Small business owners can join the conversation by using the hashtag #weggchat to chime in with questions and answers.

Event is free of charge but you must use tchat.io or twubs.com to follow the conversation using the hashtag #weggchat.  See you there!
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Empowering Women Entrepreneurs Changes the Outcomes for Future Generations

At the MEDays Forum panel “Bolstering Growth Through Gender Equality,” nine women were featured from different parts of the world and from different industrial sectors. The session was moderated by Aghadeer Jweihan, the director of the office of Jordan’s Princess Taghrid Mohammad and an entrepreneur.  The Forum took place in Tangier (Morocco), considered the ‘Davos of Africa.’

Ingrid Bouterse-Waldring, the first lady of Suriname and the panel’s chair, stressed that encouraging female entrepreneurs has benefits that are not merely financial: Empowered women change the outcomes for future generations. For single mothers, self-employment allows them the greater flexibility needed in their schedules to care for children.

Several points that came out of the Forum:

1.  Women need to be bolder.
2.  Women should be running big [global] companies.
3.  Women need to think bigger.
4.  Women need to support other women (similar to what WEGG offers).

Read more about how the MEDays Forum looks to spur economic growth by empowering women.

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Note: Don’t miss our next WEGGinar™ 12/6/17 on “Harnessing the Power of Diversity and Inclusion:  Creating a Workplace that Works” and presented by Joselyn DiPetta, Google and Managing Partner at Present Possibility. Register here:
https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/1837790091765976835
Event is free of charge but you must register in advance to attend.
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How Jordanian Women Are Making Progress Toward Gender Equality

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Jordan is considered one of the more progressive countries in the Middle East for women’s rights, and has established a legacy focused on the positive future of gender equality.  Want to learn more about Jordan and meet with top female leaders and everyday Jordanian women to learn how the country is going about making progress toward gender equality?  Your wish is about to come true.

A 10-day journey is coming up on August 29, 2016.  Take a look at the following information now to determine if you want to participate in the program (prices start at U.S. $6,795 per person).  Here’s a glimpse of the itinerary:

  1. Welcome to Jordan
  2. Jordan’s Capital City
  3. Female Cooperatives in Jordan
  4. Female Inheritance and Ownership
  5. Aqaba and the Red Sea
  6. A Night in the Valley of the Moon
  7. The Ancient City of Petra
  8. Nabatean Pottery and Amman
  9. Women in the Arts
  10. Homeward Bound

Learn more:  The Women of Jordan

Note:  Our next WEGG webinar is held on 3/2 and is about how to protect your intellectual property.  It’s no charge.  Get more details and register here.

Gender Equality Policies For Exporting Companies in Brazil

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Three Brazilian government organizations have signed an agreement to support gender equality policies for exporting companies. The partnership involves the Brazilian Ministry of Development Industry and Foreign Trade, the Special Secretariat for Women’s Policies and the Brazilian Export and Investment Promotion Agency.

The goal of the agreement is to expand and promote female entrepreneurship among exporting companies.

Read more here.

Photo courtesy:  gaby_bra

Posted by:  Laurel Delaney

Give Women Equal Opportunity in India

It’s that pure and simple.  Let’s get it done.

“India’s growth rate can make a quantum jump of 4.2 per cent if women in the country get equal opportunity in the core sectors of the economy,” Lakshmi Puri, Assistant Secretary-General of UN Women — the newly created body tasked with ensuring welfare of women — said here.

According to a report, Progress of the World’s Women, it says:

Quoting a survey this year by industry chamber ASSOCHAM: 70 per cent of women in India are not aware of their rights as laid out in the Constitution.

It said close to 63 per cent of women in India, between the ages of 15 and 49, lack autonomy in their house which “defined as having no say in any of the vital everyday decisions like own health care, large household purchases, purchases for daily needs and visits to family or relatives.”

Read more here.

Posted by:  Laurel Delaney

Supporting Women Is Smart Global Economics

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Here’s a thoughtful piece written by Jennifer Yip (search by her name) who is a consultant for the World Bank Group’s Doing Business team.  Opening passage:

At an age when mothers admonish their children to finish their brussels sprouts, my mother issued warnings about the importance of getting a PhD if I wanted to gain the respect of my future husband. Those warnings were followed by the oft-repeated reminder that I should “marry well, so you don’t have to work if you don’t want to.”

Twenty years and a couple of degrees later I’ve often wondered how those two pieces of advice go together. What is the point of getting an advanced degree if I eventually decide not to work?

The smart economics of educated women.

Additional resources:

IMF Survey:  Equality of Sexes is Smart Economics

Smart girls, smart economics | Global Leaders Can Be Made

Gender Equality as Smart Economics

Posted by:  Laurel Delaney


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Our mission is to educate, inspire and nurture women business owners and entrepreneurs worldwide on how to go global so they can run healthier businesses and create a new future for themselves, their families and their community.


Women Entrepreneurs GROW Global is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. EIN/Tax ID #47-2956522.

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