New Faces New Voices trains Rwandan women in entrepreneurship

Graça Machel, Nelson Mandela's widow

Graça Machel, Nelson Mandela’s widow

New Faces New Voices’ Rwanda Chapter has started an initiative of training women in entrepreneurship skills, as a way of boosting the number of women joining the business sector.

The New Faces New Voices (NFNV) Rwanda country chapter was launched this June in the Rwandan capital Kigali by Graça Machel, widow of former South African leader, late Nelson Mandela (RIP).

The initiative also plans to raise $4m (about Rwf2.8 billion) to finance women’s projects and Machel said that “In every sector of economic decisions, the faces of the women must be there, and the voices of women must be heard”

According to Monique Nsanzabaganwa, the Chairperson of the Rwanda chapter, training will see at least 100 Trainers of trainers (ToT’s) who will reach out to over 300 women countrywide to train rural women in entrepreneurial skills.

Even with the existence of the Chamber of Women Entrepreneurs will enable women to perform and be competitive in national, regional and international markets by reinforcing their capacity and competency.

The number of women in business remain low in Rwanda.

FinScope 2013 revealed that women are less to benefit from the country’s current economic growth. Women are underserved in the financial sector with an estimated 12% of total credit to women although they are significant contributors to private enterprise.

Nsanzabaganwa also said that the organization aims at increasing Rwandan women’s access to finance, strengthening the skills and capacity of women entrepreneurs and growing the number and visibility of Rwandan women in leadership and decision-making positions in the financial sector to 35%, among others.

Rwanda New Faces, New Voices is a pan-African advocacy group for women that aims at a more proactive role towards women transforming lives and provide solutions to those barriers and challenges encountered by women within the financial sector

New Faces New Voices was established in 2010 by Graça Machel in partnership with the African Development Bank and other global institutions.