Empowerment and Entrepreneurship
Women still face economic restrictions globally particularly in Africa. “Women, like men, deserve every opportunity to fulfil their potential, no matter where they live. These restrictions are also bad economics as women represent over half the world’s population. We cannot leave their potential untapped.” – Dr. Jim Yong Kim (World Bank President).
In reality, many homes in Africa have women playing the role of breadwinners in the family. This is because they are widows or their husbands have lost their jobs. The family therefore, depends on the woman for their means of livelihood. These women in turn depend on their small businesses to sustain their families, which sometimes consists of more than six children.
Many women find themselves precariously teetering on the brink of lifelong poverty as a result of illiteracy, unemployment and issues bordering on gender inequality. Empowering women can help bring whole communities out of poverty: "Empower A Woman, Empower A Nation."
Youth unemployment is rife in many African countries. It is fast becoming a time bomb in Nigeria. Young school leavers and out-of-school youth have no means of livelihood because they cannot get jobs. They turn to drugs, prostitution and violence out of frustration. Many young lives are unnecessarily lost as a result. The devastating impact of this trend on the economy can only be imagined.
Small businesses are the bane of many economies particularly in Africa. That is why at SON, in line with fulfilling one of our main objectives which is poverty alleviation, we give skills training to young people and women to develop their spirit of entrepreneurship and creativity, and assist them in various capacities to set up their small businesses.
Save Our Needy has initiated and successfully implemented several empowerment and entrepreneurship programs targeted at marginalized women and youth which have given them the opportunity to either start their own small businesses or improve their employability. The organization gives free training on vocational skills and capacity building through programs such as SON Women and Youth Entrepreneurship Program and Project S.A.V.E (Skills Acquisition. Vocational training. Empowerment). Material donation of business start-up tools are also given to help women and youth break the cycle of poverty.
Since the inception of SON in 2011, over 1,500 small businesses have been created and more than 3,500 lives positively impacted through this initiative.