In Sumy and Rivne regions women are taught to build a startups
13 September 2021
The joint project of the International Labor Organization and the UNDP is teaching women in Sumy and Rivne oblasts how to start their own businesses. The joint initiative of two UN organizations, aimed at economic empowerment of women during the COVID-19 crisis, will be implemented through a series of trainings in twooblasts until November 2021.
During the outbreak of the COVID-19 epidemic, the ILO and UNDP’s study revealed that women's businesses have been affected by COVID-19 crisis way more than men's. The joint ILO-UNDP project "Empowering Women in Response to the COVID-19 Crisis in Ukraine" targets two oblasts of Ukraine - Sumy and Rivne – to support women's entrepreneurship. In Sumy oblast Okhtyrka and Konotop cities were selected for the program, and in Rivne oblast – Korets and Dubno.
The free of charge trainings, designed for women interested in starting their own businesses, were held with the active support of Sumy and Rivne Regional State Administrations and the State Employment Services. Those institutions also have helped to find women interested in enrolling for business trainings. Some participants of the three-day training were invited by the local employment center, the rest were selected based on their submitted business ideas. In total, about 110 women were trained, including those who are inactive or unemployed, as well as 25 women-entrepreneurs whose businesses suffered during the pandemic.
According to one of the participants of training program in Sumy oblast, Ms. Alina Tyshchenko, taking care of her small child currently does not allow her to get a regular job. The training helped her to improve her self-confidence when she found herself going through a difficult times, she gained a new knowledge on tax accounting for entrepreneurs and learned how to open and promote business.
The trainer for the program, Ms. Svitlana Lutsenko, noted that the entrepreneurship training will be useful both for women who already run their own businesses and for those who want to build it from scratch: ‘Taxation groups, registration of enterprise, marketing, developing a business plan are the essential components of our training. Upon completion, the participants will have to come up with their own business plans and go through all fundamental steps that will teach them to successfully start their own business. After the trainings, women will be proposed to get individual consultations to finalize their business plans,’ – says Ms. Lutsenko.
Also, women are trained to conduct a market research to determine sustainability of their business idea, its distinctiveness and ability to compete and survive at the local market. Women are being advised on how to define number of staff, equipment and facilities to implement their business idea, as well as whether additional financial support will be required.
It is expected that trainings will help to improve the situation with women entrepreneurship in both regions.
It should be pointed out, that the trainings conducted by the ILO, do not provide for grants, but educational and mentoring support. The trainings are conducted according to the ILO’s unique methodology under the program "Start and improve your business", initiated by the ILO back in ‘80s, while Ukraine joined the program three decades later. It’s a step-by-step guide that teaches a potential entrepreneur to start own business without any previous knowledge or experience in entrepreneurship. All business ideas, implemented under the program must be environmentally friendly.