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International Women’s Day: African Development Bank’s AFAWA, Entreprenarium, to celebrate with closing ceremonies for women entrepreneur masterclasses in three countries

Event location: 
Abidjan Cote d’Ivoire

WHAT:  Closing ceremonies for graduates of Masterclasses for women entrepreneurs organized by the African Development Bank’s AFAWA program in partnership with Entreprenarium. Entrepreneurs will receive their certificates and the event will end with a reception, during which a successful woman entrepreneur will be invited as special guest to deliver an inspirational speech.

WHERE: Cote d’Ivoire, Kenya, Gabon

WHO:   Vanessa Moungar, Director for Gender, Women and Civil Society, African Development Bank

  Kristine Ngiriye, Founder Entreprenarium

  Nadine Bla, Special Advisor to the President of the Chambre de Commerce et d’Industrie (CCI) de Côte d’Ivoire and CEO of Capital Connect

  Marie Diongoye Konate, DG PKL Group


WHERE:   Babacar Ndiaye Auditorium, African Development Bank, Headquarters, Abidjan Cote d’Ivoire

WHEN:   Friday 8th March, 2019, 10 am- 12pm

  (journalists are kindly invited to arrive at 9:30 am)



The Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa (AFAWA) program was launched at the African Development Bank’s Annual Meeting in May 2016 in Lusaka, Zambia. It is a pan-African initiative with an overarching objective of bridging the finance gap for women in Africa and unlocking their entrepreneurial capacity. AFAWA adopts a holistic approach through three pillars: strengthening access to financing for women-owned and women-led businesses, building the capacity of women entrepreneurs and financial institutions, as well as engaging with and supporting African governments to ensure legal, policy and regulatory reforms required to accelerate women’s entrepreneurship.

Entreprenarium is the first pan-African foundation that invests philanthropic capital in the training and financing of women and young entrepreneurs. Entreprenarium designs and carries out programs with the objective of equipping entrepreneurs throughout Africa with the necessary skills, knowledge and resources to succeed in the creation and development of their small and medium-sized enterprises. Since 2014, over 2,000 entrepreneurs have been trained and US$2.1 million initial capital invested in technical assistance and funding of 52 projects. Special attention is paid to women entrepreneurs through dedicated programs.

In November 2018, the AFAWA program started a partnership with the Entreprenarium Foundation on a pan-African initiative to train 1,000 women entrepreneurs in different countries. AFAWA and Entreprenarium organized trainings on business model development and financial planning in Abidjan (Côte d’Ivoire), Libreville (Gabon), and Nairobi (Kenya), strengthening the skills of 400 women entrepreneurs so far.

Following the end of the training in Cote d’Ivoire, Gabon and Kenya, and around International Women’s Day (8 March), AFAWA and Entreprenarium will host closing ceremonies to celebrate the creativity and entrepreneurship of women in different African countries and renew their commitment to unlock their potential and help them contribute to the continent’s sustainable development. All women entrepreneurs who attended the Masterclasses are expected to attend and receive certificates of participation.

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