“There is no tool for development more effective than the empowerment of women.” - Koffi Annan
Access Bank Rwanda’s Women Banking, ‘W Initiative’, recently held business trainings for women. The program is a joint initiative with the Business Development Fund (BDF) and the International Labour Organisation (ILO) offered to female customers interested in starting and those looking forward to improving their business.
The SYB (Start Your Business) training was for women with concrete business ideas who want to set out on the path of entrepreneurship. It is designed to help participants develop their business plans and equip them on how and what it takes to become successful entrepreneurs. Over the 5-day duration of the training, the 24 women participants were taught different modules spanning;costing products and services, financial planning and required start-up capital.
The IYB (Improve Your Business) training was for women already in business who desire to improve their enterprise’s management process. Over the 6-day duration of the training, 25 women participants were taken through various modules including; Marketing, Record Keeping and Financial Planning.
During both trainings, participants forged a connection that will allow them to support and inspire each other. One of the participants, Mrs. Solange, noted that Access Bank Rwanda’s “women empowerment and capacity building initiative is proof that the Bank is committed to supporting women and contributing to the development of the country.”
The closing ceremony and certificate remittance for the SYB session took place on September 30th, 2016 and was hosted by the CEO of BDF Rwanda Mr. Innocent Bulindi and the Deputy Managing Director Access Bank Rwanda,Mr. Jekwu Ozoemene, while the closing ceremony for the IYB training took place on Monday October 10th, 2016 and was co-hosted by the Country Managing Director of Access Bank Rwanda, Mr. Jean Claude Karayenzi and Mr. Livingstone,a representative from the BDF.
Participants in both programs were encouraged to approach both Access Bank and the BDF for support. They were further advised to practice what they learnt from the Book Keeping and Financial Planning trainings to enable lending institutionsbetter understand their business. The Bank also promised to follow up on the participants performance past training.
The trainees thanked Access Bank for supporting women and proposed a Solidarity Guaranty Fund which will enable them ‘risk-pool’ and provide part of the collateral required to access credit facilities from the Bank. This will complement the 75% Unfunded Risk Participation / Guarantee which the BDF had committed to provide on their behalf for qualifying facility request.