Absa Bank Kenya, in collaboration with the German Development Cooperation have launched a Sh50million program aimed at increasing growth and competitiveness of women-owned businesses.
Dubbed SHE Stars, the project will offer a business skills training for the 1500 female entrepreneurs running small businesses in various sectors of the economy that have been negatively affected by the current Covid-19 pandemic.
Adopting holistic face-to-face training, online sessions and workshops; the program aims to address business gaps and training needs that women entrepreneurs face, such as inadequate access to finance, mentorship, information and markets.
The analysis of the business impacts of Covid-19 and the development of coping and adaptation measures will be specifically targeted.
Speaking during the launch of the partnership, Absa Bank's Business Banking Director Elizabeth Wasunna said: "Absa Bank is committed to making financial services more accessible and improving financial literacy among women entrepreneurs."
Representing GIZ, Thomas Jaeschke, the E4D Head of Programme underscored the German Development Cooperation's commitment to create decent employment and sustainable jobs for women and youth through MSME development.
"This partnership therefore aims to address capacity, structural and financial challenges, as well as the impacts of the current pandemic, these MSME's face to realize their full potential in accelerating these multiplier effects," said Jaeschke.
The 1,500 SHE Stars will be enrolled in a Technical Business Management Programme facilitated by Yunus Environment Hub under the Absa SHE Business Academy as part of the program.
Among other things, the program will cover cash flow analysis, risk management, income diversification, branding, fundraising, leadership, and people management.
As part of the training program, Absa Bank will also provide loan facilities.
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