March 2021. A month of celebration during which FINCA Haiti staff united to celebrate the wonderful women that we serve. Their contribution to the Haitian economy is tremendous as FINCA’s female clients alone create each 2.2 jobs for their fellow citizens. Their financial behavior is stellar, as they are the ones who act responsibly and repay their loans back on time. Still, their businesses are far more unstable/seasonal (58%) compare to male led businesses (42%) and they generally access lower loan amounts.
Reflecting on best ways to accompany women towards an equal tomorrow full of opportunities, FINCA Haiti revived its women entrepreneurship training for the occasion. During an entire week, from March 8th-12th, eleven (11) FINCA branch locations welcomed 116 women and 1 male entrepreneurs in the communities that we serve, many of them not even being FINCA clients.
Crafted around entrepreneurship and business plan writing, the sessions focused on the benefits of planning to increase sales and generate greater profits given that a recent enterprise survey revealed that most businesswomen from FINCA’s clientele were earning 6 times less money than their male counterparts.
Even in the informal sector, a business plan is a useful planning tool, and the participants took advantage of the sessions to share their insights and explore how they can use their experiences in the business field and tips learned from FINCA’s team to layout a short but gainful business plan. Many of the participants also ceased the opportunity to learn more about financial services provided by FINCA Haiti as very few microfinance institutions have products fitting the profile of those very low-income entrepreneurs. In fact, we are very excited to welcome in FINCA Haiti’s family thirty two (32) of those women who ceased the opportunity to apply for a loan.
As the effervescence around women empowerment wanes and goes back to being the least conversation during end of March, FINCA Haiti has pledged to extend its women empowerment activities that will focus on training, coaching, and promoting women businesses in efforts to challenge the many barriers that prevents women from being financially successful.