This fall, WSWI is working with a new partner, the Daughters of Nyeri Association. DONA brings together Nyeri women, born or married, interested in the development of Nyeri County, Kenya, youth and young women. The key objectives of the Association are to
- Provide opportunities for girls and young women to develop their fullest potential as responsible citizens of the world;
- Support youth in improving their livelihood through entrepreneurship training, ICT literacy training and start-up capital;
- Develop and implement a mentorship program by members to specific disadvantaged groups that may include single mothers, the boy child, persons with disabilities, and persons living with HIV/Aids; and
- Educate DONA members on pertinent issues affecting youth and young women in Nyeri County.
DONA is a new organization and WSWI will facilitate planning retreats for its Nyeri and Nairobi chapters in November 2016.
We’re in the process of planning WSWI’s fall 2016 visit to Nairobi to support our partners with their work to empower women and youth through entrepreneurship and community leadership. But before sharing some exciting news about expanding this work, here’s a recap of board member, Kirsti Tcheryan’s April 2016 workshops.
WSWI Director, Kirsti Tcherkoyan, with a new group of Youth Banner entrepreneurs
Kirsti conducted two workshops in collaboration with The Youth Banner. The first workshop was for new participants in our program. First-time participants begin with developing their business and growth strategies. This training covers core values, purpose, vision, brand promise, and setting objectives, which help them to solve problems they face in their businesses. The eleven new trainees included six women and five men. As is usual for these micro-business owners, all of them work to support and provide care for families that often extend beyond their children to elder members. The trainees were engaged in the following range of businesses: provision of services such as IT cybersecurity, beauty salon, and motivational speaking; selling baby diapers, snacks, second hand clothes and baked goods. There was also a musician and book author, a restaurant owner, and a business owner the provided fish and chicken processing and sales. At the time of the workshop, 87% of the trainees said that their businesses were profitable and 13% said their business was not profitable, which is why our program includes follow-up workshops to review progress in business plan implementation and business growth coaching.
The eleven returning business owners were all women with similar responsibilities for care of their extended families as a key motivator for increasing their income. The good news is that all were making increased profits, adding employees, and looking for ways to either continue the growth of their existing businesses or start additional businesses!