Rising Woman Initiative winners jet off to Nairobi

The Managing Director of NMG- U, Ms Susan Nsibirwa (right), her dfcu Bank counterpart Ms Kate Kiiza (2nd right), the Sales Manager of Uganda Airlines, Ms Sylvia Kaggwa (3rd right), and the head of Women in Business at dfcu Bank, Ms Ruth Asasira (left), flag off the entrepreneurs in Kampala on Febraury 5, 2024. PHOTO/ISAAC KASAMANI

What you need to know:

  • Dfcu Bank has invested Shs120m in the winners’ businesses since 2018 when the Rising Women Initiative was launched.

The Nation Media Group Uganda (NMG-U) in partnership with dfcu Bank, the Uganda Investment Authority and Uganda Airlines have flagged off 10 women entrepreneurs from the sixth edition of Rising Woman Initiative to Nairobi, Kenya, for a week-long mentorship trip.

The mentorship trip is part of the awards that are offered to winners annually after a tense writing proposal competition.

“We choose 10 winners from the proposal writing competition. Top three winners get Shs15m, Shs10m and Shs5 million in descending order, on top of an all-expenses paid mentorship trip, while the seven benefit from the trip,” Ms Ruth Asasira, the head of Women in Business at dfcu Bank, said.

Speaking to the women entrepreneurs on Monday at the dfcu offices in Kampala before the flag-off, Ms Kate Kiiza, the dfcu executive director, noted that the women will get tips from the trip that they will apply to transform their businesses.

“If you never visit other homes, you think your mother cooks best. So today it is to say we know we cook well, but go and bring the recipes to improve your businesses. We have all the partners to support you so the onus is on you. I wish you the best and above all have fun,” Ms Kiiza said.

Ms Susan Nsibirwa, the NMG-U managing director, noted that empowering women in business is crucial in enabling them to support their communities and the nation at large.

“On behalf of NMG-U, this is a fantastic initiative, I thank dfcu again. Women meet challenges when starting businesses, I am glad to see that another group of women is getting an opportunity to go and experience another environment,” she said.

“Kenya is a big and fast-paced economy, there is no time for excuses. I hope you will learn and network because it is important to have people to walk this journey with,” Ms Nsibirwa added.

Ms Asasira urged the beneficiaries to use the trip to think of expanding their businesses beyond Uganda.

“We foresee a lot of market linkages for the women. The women we have identified in Nairobi are running Pan African businesses, and we hope they will open their minds to the possibility of scaling their businesses to go beyond borders,” she explained.

Ms Sylivia Kaggwa, the sales manager at Uganda Airlines, pledged to support women entrepreneurs by exporting their products to countries such as South Sudan.

On its part, the Uganda Investment Authority said it will facilitate the growth of businesses under its Small and Medium Enterprises Portal where entrepreneurs can globally advertise their products.