KAMPALA – In the dynamic landscape of business in Uganda, the role of women is increasingly taking centre stage. It’s a transformational journey marked by grit, resilience, and remarkable success stories. As we explore this landscape, one initiative stands out as a beacon of progress – the Rising Woman Initiative – held in partnership with Nation Media Group, dfcu Bank, Uganda Investment Authority and Uganda Airlines.
The Rising Woman Campaign, pioneered by dfcu Bank, has become synonymous with empowering women in business across Uganda. This campaign has not only shone a light on the extraordinary achievements of women entrepreneurs but has also addressed the multifaceted challenges they face in the business world.
In a traditionally male-dominated arena, Ugandan women have been breaking barriers, shattering glass ceilings, and carving their niches in diverse sectors. From agribusiness to technology, finance to hospitality, the success stories are both inspiring and instructive. These women aren’t just thriving; they are driving innovation, creating employment opportunities, and contributing significantly to the nation’s economic growth.
Statistically speaking, women form over 51% of the population and 38.4% of registered SMEs businesses are women owned.
The Rising Woman Campaign has played a pivotal role in this transformation. Through targeted financial support, capacity building, and mentorship programs, dfcu Bank has provided a platform for women entrepreneurs to flourish. The impact is undeniable- with over 30,000 women led/owned enterprises reached, 6,000 women entrepreneurs financed, enhanced financial literacy, and a network of like-minded women eager to share experiences and insights. The Initiative has also seen 30 enterprises access mentoring across borders. Over the duration of the campaign, we have received over 500 business proposals and allocated 90 million in seed funding.
Yet, it’s not just about individual success stories. It’s about recognizing the collective strength and potential of women in business. The Rising Woman platform has fostered a sense of community and collaboration among women entrepreneurs. It has amplified their voices, providing them with the tools and resources they need to overcome challenges and seize opportunities.
However, it’s important to acknowledge that the journey is far from over. Gender disparities persist in access to finance, opportunities, and leadership roles. Women still face unique hurdles, from societal expectations to limited access to networks. The Rising Woman Campaign is a reminder that there is much work to be done, and it’s a call to action for more organizations and stakeholders to join this cause.
As we celebrate the successes of women in business in Uganda, let us also recognize that there is untapped potential waiting to be harnessed. The Rising Woman Campaign exemplifies what can be achieved when concerted efforts are made to empower women. It’s an industry perspective that showcases not only the remarkable achievements but also the imperative for continued support and advocacy.
In conclusion, the landscape of women in business in Uganda is evolving, and dfcu Bank’s Rising Woman Campaign serves as an exemplar of progress. It reminds us that when women are empowered, businesses prosper, communities thrive, and economies flourish. It’s a beacon of hope and a testament to the remarkable journey of women entrepreneurs in Uganda.
The writer, Ruth Asasira is the Head – Women in Business, at dfcu Bank