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A social entrepreneur is multi-dimensional

Jos's picture

CanadaJos

Josephine harnessing the entrepreneurial power of women in Sikaunzwe.

An avid follower of the women’s movement and as someone who embodies entrepreneurialism, my goal is to bring positive impact to women in all areas of my life. I can’t tell you one particular instance as I’m a dynamic person, but what I can tell you is how in all areas of my life I embody entrepreneurialism for the betterment of women’s lives everywhere.

Firstly, Women’s economic sovereignty is the basis of my career. I designed and coordinated programs with women’s groups in food security. In managing the Scaled Sorghum Commercialisation Project (http://www.ewb.ca/en/whatwedo/overseas/projects/sorghumzambia.html) with CARE International Zambia, we opened up access to markets for women’s groups in diversifying their food staple crops. Working together with Zambian Breweries, my goals were to develop Zambia’s local market for sorghum by providing adult education to farmers on sorghum production, managing the building and running of two sorghum processing factories and strategized on the introduction of sorghum products on the local market, retail market, wholesale market and export market. Bringing private sector partnerships with local women’s groups was only a small taste of what entrepreneurialism could bring to poverty reduction. I quickly moved to Ghana and started designing a farmers’ curriculum to bring in business skills amongst women’s groups. Designing a strategic development of northern Ghana’s food security and partnership of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) of Ghana, my colleagues and I establishing the “Agriculture as a Business” program through the three northern regions. (http://www.josephinetsui.ca/international-development/ghana/ghana-intro/) The main goal was to build the Ministry’s capacity in providing food security through two processes; 1)Capacity building of facilitation skills of field extension agents 2) Instituting a farmer group development curriculum of business links to inputs and market access. The programme has now expanded to three regions of Ghana and over 15 districts.

A social entrepreneur is a person who has certain beliefs, and sticks by them throughout their life struggles. As a women scientist, ensuring women have a chance to become technical expertise has been a consistent theme in my life. IN 2000-2002, I worked for an organization called Women in Science and Engineering. Those skills have translated to being the feminist voice advocating for ethical science towards women’s rights. I’m still advocating for those same issues as recently I’ve written an article for the F-word describing how theTimes online for misunderstanding thescientific discoveries and their effects on women. (http://www.thefword.org.uk/blog/2010/03/the_bad_mother) I am also a guest speaker at Bristol Girl Geek in May as a women in international development promoting women to gain technical backgrounds for the betterment of society. (http://bristolgirlgeekdinners.com/)

But entrepreneurialism isn’t just about creating opportunities for others; it’s also about going through the process of analytical thinking and creating an easier path for your peers. As a woman who has undergone domestic abuse, I was able to harness that energy into a positive productive project called “Mama Says Good Girls Marry Doctors”. The project is for girls like me who have undergone some form of abuse resulting from intergenerational and multicultural values differences. The project is a blog and an anthology and can be found at www.goodgirlsmarrydoctors.webs.com . We’ve received over 30 submissions and we’re looking forward to creating a help guide for other women who have been in similar situation.

Lastly, an entrepreneur is someone who creates promise. A budding project is to create a clothing line for young women to feel proud of their sexuality. I believe women should be able to feel attractive but still be in control of their sexual experiences. Hopefully this clothing line will be come available for young girls so they can realize it’s cool to be in control of your sexuality.

I love my love, mostly because it's entrepreneurial, multi dimensional and it focuses on making the world a better place through women's rights. I wish all women had the possibility to be unapologetic entrepreneurs.

Comments

Nicole Pampanin's picture

Amazing

Hi Jos,

You are doing such amazing, inspiring work. I would love to hear more about your work in Ghana as I do a lot of work in Ghana as well. You said that the program has expanded to three regions of Ghana...is the program in the Volta Region?

I love the way you define an entrepreneur and I am impressed with all you have done thus far. Good luck with your clothing line. I look forward to hearing more about that as well as your other work.

Nicole

mrbeckbeck's picture

Thank you...

Jos,

What a great set of experiences you've had?! I'm impressed by all that you've been able to accomplish, and will continue to accomplish.

Thanks for being in the PulseWire community and contributing this awesome application for the Fellowship! Best of luck to you on this, and in your work. I look forward to seeing more from you.

Scott

Scott Beck
World Pulse Online Community Volunteer

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