Helping Women Entrepreneurs Reach their Goals

Helping Women Entrepreneurs Reach their Goals

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Women entrepreneurs should turn to the many organisations that exist purely to support them in their business endeavours.

According to the White Paper on Female Entrepreneurship released this year by FNB, women entrepreneurs don’t make effective use of support services. Figures gathered by the South African Women Entrepreneurs Network (SAWEN) indicated that 42% of women were not aware of organisations that support business in South Africa. Of the women who had used the organisations a significant number reported that their needs were met, showing that female business owners will benefit from using these organisations.

Here are some of the local organisations and associations set up to assist women entrepreneurs:

SAWEN

The SAWEN is a networking forum for individuals and organisations that are committed to the promotion and advancement of women entrepreneurs. It facilitates and monitors the socio-economic advancement of women entrepreneurs and their positive impact on the country’s economy. SAWEN facilitates access to business resources, information and opportunities for South African women entrepreneurs.

For more information, visit:

http://www.trevenna.net/sawen/sawenmain.htm

BWA (Businesswomen’s Association)

The Businesswomen’s Association is the largest and most prominent association of business and professional women in South Africa, and the voice of women in business. Through strategic partnerships with sponsors, non-profit organisations, leading companies, business schools and international associations, it provides ongoing opportunities to advance the interests of women in business. Members include entrepreneurs, professionals and senior decision makers. The BWA is a non-profit, voluntary organisation committed to offering real value in the form of leading and training, connecting and supporting members and South African business.

For more information visit:

http://www.bwasa.co.za

WIF (Women In Finance)

WIF is an exciting and inventive organisation that is at the forefront of SME assistance & development and the empowerment of women. WIF exists to create an innovative environment that empowers individuals to develop successful businesses throughout Africa through collaboration, support, diversity and challenge. The aim of WIF is to enable individuals and companies to maximise their growth and through its diverse offerings that include networking, mentorship, training, collaboration, entrepreneurship development and support.

For more information visit:

http://www.womeninfinance.co.za/

Women in IT

Women in IT is an initiative that was launched by Fizz Marketing with the support of big IT players like Microsoft to provide a support structure for those women working in what is today a male dominated IT environment. Membership is free and the benefits include a bursary and mentorship programmes, a quarterly electronic newsletter containing articles relating to women in IT, knowledge sharing through the website and invitations to events where you can connect with and support other women.

For more information, visit:

http://www.womeninit.co.za/registera.asp

Women in Business

The Women In Business organisation is a forum established as a networking platform to empower economically marginalised women to empower themselves. This platform is for the purpose of information sharing amongst groups of entrepreneurial, diverse women. Through this platform women are encouraged to take control of their businesses, to set their own agenda’s and timetables, to gain skills and knowledge, for the purpose of increasing business confidence, facilitating equal access to economic and productive resources, and to facilitate poverty eradication, utilising gender empowerment principles.

For more information, visit:
http://www.womeninbusiness.org.za/

WOESA (Women in Oil & Energy South Africa)

WOESA aims to facilitate and promote business opportunities for and enhance the participation of South African women in the oil and energy sector. It is imperative for women to focus cohesively on addressing their unique position in order to address these facts. WOESA’s first priority is to facilitate women’s participation in business opportunities in the oil, gas and other energy sector in South Africa. WOESA offers services to its member companies, organisations and individuals focusing on developing a knowledge base and building capacity amongst women through education and training.

For more information, visit:

http://www.woesa.com/

SAWIC (South African Women in Construction)

The South African Women in Construction (SAWIC) initiative was founded in 1997 to empower women to gain access to contracts, training, finance and networks in the construction industry. South African Women in Construction (SAWIC) is a National Association of women entrepreneurs, including women employed in all areas of construction, from the skilled trades to business ownership, with International Affiliation to the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) in America and Australia. Members are invited to quarterly national workshops at the Development Bank of Southern Africa. Provincial quarterly workshops are held in the capital cities as well.

For more information, visit:

http://www.sawic.org/

TWIB (Technology for Women In Business)

Officially launched as a programme of the Department of Trade and Industry, the TWIB is located in the Centre for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). Its main objective is to ensure that women involved in arts and craft, manufacturing, mining and energy, construction, tourism, and information and communication technology are empowered to adopt technology and science as an integral business solution for strengthening their enterprises.

For more information, visit:

http://www.trevenna.net/thedti/twib.htm

Women’s Development Businesses

The vision of the WDB Group is to offer real hope to the women of South Africa to enable them to build a self sustaining future. The primary vehicle that it uses to achieve this vision is offering microcredit to rural women in order to help them out of poverty in a sustainable manner. Throughout the world there is a growing realisation of the crucial role microcredit can play in reducing poverty, particularly when women are the main recipients. Increasingly women’s contribution, as workers, entrepreneurs and managers of family and community welfare is recognised as central to the ability of households, communities and the nation to tackle the crisis of meeting people’s survival and subsistence needs.

For more information, visit:

http://www.wdb.co.za