In an effort to raise their standard of living, thereby alleviating poverty among their families, Street Business School has empowered roughly 30 indigent women in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, Nigeria.

The Street Business School by SI4DEV is a six-month mobile business training designed to serve the unique needs of individuals living in poverty by enabling them to be agents of change, supporting them to start sustainable business ventures such that they can have a reliable income stream long into the future, the Lagos-based publication This Day reported.

Patricia Okolo, operation/publicity manager, while speaking recently on the sidelines of the graduation ceremony for first set of beneficiaries in Orozo and Lugbe-kauta communities in F.C.T., said that the aim of the program was to empower women to develop business concepts with or without finances.

According to Okolo, the Street Business School started in Uganda by the BeadforLife, a nonprofit organization aiming to end extreme poverty, is now implementing programs in 14 countries in Africa, adding that SI4DEV is the first organization implementing the Street Business School in Nigeria.

“We started in August 2019, with the recruitment and selection process, and was delivered in six communities in Nigeria,” she said. “Ninety-six people enrolled for the program in Bayelsa state (Yenegwe community), Abuja (Orozo and Lugbe Sauka Kahuta community), Kano state (Sabon gari 1 and Sabon gari 2) and Lagos state (Ikotun Community).”

Okolo added that the program “is done in rural communities for women in order to plug the poverty gap and make them self-sufficient going into future businesses.”

Noting that the 30 graduands were among the first set of beneficiaries in Nigeria, Okolo said, “This is the first batch we are having so far in Nigeria involving six communities, three states, and two locations in Abuja. A lot of them actually have business ideas but having the issue of financial constraints or actually running a business but don’t have the concept or skills of maintaining and running a business continuously.”

She said that during the training, they taught the women how to generate capital either by doing minimal jobs that didn’t require much of their time, cleaning and doing other things to generate little funds and then starting one or two businesses.

“This is a mobile business classroom with trainings held in the local communities,” Okolo said. “It is a LOVE + Business model that seeks to bring marginalized people around the planet into self-sufficiency. So the program has really changed their lives and we believe in the next three month they will be self sufficient and be able to help their families.”

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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