CHICAGO, December 16, 2021 – For decades, Opportunity International has created and supported projects that increase inclusion and chart a pathway out of poverty for women. This year, Opportunity recognizes Sinapi Aba as the winner of the fourth annual Women and Girls Opportunity (WeGO) Awards for increasing access to financing, financial literacy, business training, and gender-equity strategies for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) owned by women.
Sinapi Aba’s pilot project “Women in Business Entrepreneurial Mentoring” matches emerging women entrepreneurs with female entrepreneur mentors who are running successful businesses. Mentors provide support and guidance to the women entrepreneurs and facilitate learning using practical examples from their own experience. They teach the mentees business skills and how to think like an entrepreneur. The pilot project engaged 52 mentors and 103 mentees, all of whom were empowered to enter the profession they learned. Sinapi launched a second cohort in April 2021, expanding to more locations and increasing the number of young women participating to 225.
The WeGO Awards were established in 2018 to celebrate and promote innovations in economic empowerment for women and girls around the world. The program honours staff and clients across Africa, Asia, and Latin America who are working selflessly to overcome significant challenges to economic and educational advancement for women and girls. It calls attention to the groundbreaking work that deserves expansion and replication.
The WeGO Awards accept submissions from Opportunity partners around the world, which a panel of women then evaluate based on criteria related to technology, scalability, sustainability, the need to include men in social change, and the challenge of focusing on the next generation. The three winners were selected from a pool of global submissions and voted on by the public.
“The WeGO Awards spotlight programs and partners around the world that are empowering women and girls to break the cycle of poverty and chart a brighter future,” said Lydia Baldridge Meier, senior vice president, Philanthropy Services. “We are proud to honour all of our partners during another challenging year.”
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