Africa-Press – Botswana. Women have been encouraged to venture into cooperatives and partnerships as working in silos deprives them of many opportunities.
Addressing a business seminar organised by Fruit of Life Ministries in Selebi Phikwe over the weekend, Assistant Minister of Trade and Industry, Ms Beauty Manake emphasised the need for women to be empowered to start businesses to sustain their families.
She said one of the factors limiting women to venture into sustainable businesses was lack of knowledge hence her move to bring SPEDU and other stakeholders on board to share their respective services and how they could assist women.
Furthermore, Ms Manake explained that for the country to achieve its national Vision of 2036, it was upon women to be at the forefront by engaging in impactful programmes that could contribute meaningfully to the country’s Gross Domestic Product and transform their lives for the better.
She encouraged women to make use of organisations such as Local Enterprise Authority and Citizen Entrepreneurship Development Agency to help them venture into businesses.
Ms Manake also urged women to keep striving for the best and never give up because an economically empowered and enlightened woman was the solution to a lot of challenges faced by the society.
For his part, SPEDU research cluster development manager, Mr Gaseitsewe Mthethwa explained that SPEDU was not a financier but it facilitated and promoted investment opportunities in the SPEDU region, which covered five constituencies namely Selebi Phikwe East, Selebi Phikwe West, Bobonong, Mmadinare and Lerala/Maunatlala.
He said SPEDU also strived to promote economic diversity and sustainable economic projects which contributed to employment creation.
Mr Gaseitsewe challenged Fruit of Life ministries women to think beyond the church and take advantage of business initiatives brought by SPEDU, encouraging them to form cooperatives and partnerships to venture into business.
Emang Basadi president, Ms Virginia Masole urged women to participate in politics, adding that the government was concerned about minimal participation of women in politics even though women outnumbered their men.
She also urged women to join hands to support one another and share ideas for them to transform their lives economically and socially.
The senior gender officer in the Department of Gender Affairs, Ms Nancy Mothibedi said women were faced with a lot of challenges such as unemployment and gender based violence.
She said the challenges led to women’s over dependence on men.
Ms Mothibedi said it was upon women to change the status quo by taking advantage of government programmes to transform their lives.
She emphasised on mindset change, saying that women should change how they think and do things.