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November 23, 2022 (DJIBOUTI, Djibouti) – The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Secretariat, in partnership with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR), and with the financial support from the Government of Canada, yesterday kicked off the rolling out an Online Entrepreneurship and Financial Literacy Training Programme for Women and Girls in the IGAD region. 

A comprehensive training needs assessment to inform the design and roll-out of the Online training programme was successfully carried out in 2021 by UNITAR under the “Advancing Gender Equality and Women Empowerment in Africa” project. The findings revealed that the training needs vary per region, sector and stage of maturity. It also highlighted the need to equip women entrepreneurs with fundamental concepts of entrepreneurship, financial literacy, and tools to help them overcome gender-specific challenges and barriers. In addition, according to the World Bank’s International Finance Cooperation (IFC 2016), women own roughly 48% of all enterprises in Africa. However, despite this huge percentage of women-owned enterprises, women still face obstacles in acquiring the knowledge, know-how and network to access credit, loans and funds compared to the enterprises run by male counterparts, where they can acquire loans, credit and support from banks. 

Against this background, IGAD Secretariat in partnership with UNDP, UNITAR and with support from the Government of Canada, launched the Online Entrepreneurship and Financial Literacy Training Programme for Women and Girls in the IGAD region

This pilot programme comprises of 5-week online training and a 1-week in-person workshop in the region. Twenty-five women entrepreneurs from IGAD Member States were nominated to participate. The pilot programme will also support IGAD to acquire an online learning platform and related capacity to host and deliver the training programme to their member countries in the near future. 

The programme will focus on the fundamental concepts of social entrepreneurship and financial literacy to help participants develop their entrepreneurial and financial knowledge, skills and competencies to identify business opportunities and take action to design and develop solutions.  

Dr. Workneh Gebeyehu, IGAD Executive Secretary, who has been committed to advancing gender equality and the empowerment of women in the IGAD Secretariat, delivered a keynote speech on advancing the economic human rights of women in the IGAD Region during the launching. 


Watch the remarks by the Executive Secretary below

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