Flourish Africa empowers 500 female entrepreneurs | The Guardian Nigeria News

Flourish Africa, a women empowerment movement founded by Apostle Folorunso Alakija, has awarded 100 women entrepreneurs with entrepreneurship scholarships of up to N2 million from its N1 billion fund to empower 2,500 women entrepreneurs over five years.

Founder, Flourish Africa and philanthropist, Apostle Folorunso Alakija said a total of 500 women entrepreneurs have graduated from the Flourish Africa Business and Life Skills Training Program which was designed to provide business training and mentorship to women-owned micro, small and medium enterprises ( MSMEs) and 100 of them received seed grants to grow their businesses.

Speaking at the graduation ceremony in Lagos, Alakija said: “Our vision was clear from the very beginning. We are aware that economic inequality is still a huge challenge for women in Africa, so we decided to establish a platform that would allow us to empower women who would then empower other women.

“According to the popular saying, when you empower a woman, you empower the whole world, I am happy to say that we are preparing the next generation of business leaders whose decisions in business and life will positively impact their families, communities and contribute to the socio-economic development of Nigeria in the long run .”

In a keynote speech at the event, the co-founder of Sahel Consulting, Mrs. Ndidi Nwuneli, stated that women hold the key to transforming not only Nigeria but the entire African continent.

Nwuneli noted that it has become imperative for women to rise above every stumbling block by venturing into uncharted territories to realize their God-given potentials.

She added that despite the challenging work environment, some women have continued to break glass ceilings and become big hits and CEOs of many corporate organizations in the country.

Although these activities show progress, she said that “it is not enough. Land ownership statistics show that only 10 percent of women in Nigeria own land and as an entrepreneur, if you don’t have land, it limits you in owning collateral and investing in long-term assets like a factory. Therefore, women must become property owners.”

Also at the event, the representative of Google, Flourish Africa’s technology partner, Mrs. Jola Oluremi-Makinde, commended the founder of Flourish Africa for equipping the women with the necessary skills and resources to grow their businesses.

Vice President, Channels Media Group, Ms. Shola Momoh, appreciated Alaki for providing such a unique platform where women can become financially independent and create a successful future for themselves.

One of the beneficiaries and Chairperson of the Flourish Africa Alumni Association, Mrs. Hamsatu Aliu-Afegba, expressed her gratitude to Flourish Africa for the unique opportunity, stressing that the scholarship would help immensely in the growth of her business.

She said that in addition to the scholarship, she gained a set of skills that will last her a lifetime, helping her grow her business and supporting other women to succeed in the future.

Elvira Parkinson

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