Coca-Cola launches empowerment programs for women’s day

The International Women’s Day highlights the private sector’s crucial role in  advancing the economic inclusion of women in Africa. 

With the fast changing world and limited opportunities, Coca-Cola Beverages Africa (CCBA)wants to use industry leadership to help solve the current situation with an aim of creating a greater shared opportunity for  the business and the communities we serve across the value chain.  

“We understand that our business can only thrive when the communities we serve thrive too. This  is why we have made economic inclusion of women one of the pillars of our sustainability  strategy,” says James Bowmaker, Managing Director at CCBA in Kenya. 

Across our value chain, we are working to improve skills and business knowledge for women,  which in turn can help give them access to more opportunities. 

For example, in Tanzania we have an economic inclusion programme called Mwanamke Shujaa  (“A Brave Woman”), which provides training and mentorship to woman food vendors, as well as  tools of the trade to enable them to grow their businesses. Training covered key areas like  bookkeeping, customer care, stress management and capital growth. 

In Ethiopia, female engineering students have joined our “Women in Engineering” trainee  programme which will give them development opportunities and exposure to the company’s  world-class operations, setting them up for future employment.  

CCBA has also entered into partnerships in Ghana with Girls in Science and Technology (GIST, CCBA subsidiary Voltic aims to reach women at different levels of education, providing them with the mentorship  and coaching they need for a successful and impactful Science, Technology, Engineering and  Mathematics (STEM) career.  

In South Africa, CCBA has also established a bursary fund at the University of Pretoria to support female  students from previously disadvantaged backgrounds in their final year of engineering studies. 

In Mozambique, a group of women plastic waste collectors completed a 12-week training course  in an economic inclusion programme supported by CCBA. These women have since educated  their communities about the positive effects of recycling. 

“We will continue to focus on creating a better shared future, to grow and sustain small businesses  and enhance livelihoods, resulting in increased economic value and business capability for  women, communities and our business system, says Bowmaker. 

“We believe this holistic approach, within and outside our organisation, drawing on the ability of  everyone to inspire inclusion, is a powerful formula for change.” 


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