One hundred women in Muhanga and Gasabo districts have been equipped with various life skills to enable them uplift their livelihood.
The women were trained in weaving baskets and clothes, tailoring, juice and wine processing from pineapples and tomatoes, fruit cultivation, and handicraft.
During the closing ceremony of the 10-day training on Thursday, women cooperatives showcased their products and the best received cash awards.
The training was conducted by Women for Women International (WFWI) Rwanda.
Tuzamurane Shyogwe cooperative in Muhanga District, engaged in hairdressing and manicure, was awarded Rwf1 million as overall winner.
Odette Numukobwa, the cooperative’s president, said the skills acquired on business management would enable them propel their business to another level.
She said previously they were operating in isolation in their villages before coming together.
“Our standards changed after joining efforts in cooperative, with this training, we are going to equip our saloon with modern hair dressing equipment,” Numukobwa said.
“I call upon women that were left out in society to leave unproductive jobs and join cooperatives regardless of their capital.”
Divine Nikuze, a member of Inkwakuzi handicrafts cooperative in Ndera Sector, Gasabo District, said in a cooperative they are able to save and help each other.
“Working in cooperatives has enabled me to raise my family of eight. I have built a four-room house, simply put I can say that our development pace is steadfast,” she added.
Antoinette Uwimana, the country director of WFWI, encouraged the women to start targeting international market for their products.
“We promise to engage different government levels to help you in market accessibility,” Uwimana said.
She said more women were set to benefit from similar training.
Muhanga Mayor Beatrice Uwamariya commended the women for working together.
“Trading from the market will help you to showcase your products, become competitive and broaden your business,” the mayor said.
She also called on women to work with financial institutions where they can seek credit facilities to expand their businesses.
The trainees were selected from 20 cooperatives in both districts.
Clemence Bideri, the economic empowerment manager at WFWI, said they would engage men in next programmes.