A new initiative to support private sector actors to grow their agricultural businesses in an inclusive and gender-responsive way.
Under the competitive initiative, SNV provides advisory services, mentoring and financial support to private sector actors operating in agriculture, including small and medium enterprises and cooperative groups/production units, to develop, enhance and roll-out innovative gender-responsive inclusive business ideas. Gender-responsive inclusive businesses generate profit for the private sector actors by bringing women into the core business of the company as employees, producers, distributors and/or customers. Profit is generated by increased quality and productivity in the business or the creation of new untapped markets. At the same time, the benefits for women include opportunities for jobs and leadership positions, increased income, increased resilience to climate change, women-friendly working environments and access to goods and services. In this way, gender-responsive inclusive businesses are win/win.
This package is an initiative of the’ Enhancing Opportunities for Women’s Enterprises’ (EOWE) programme and was launched in September 2017. SNV launched the Gender-responsive Inclusive Business initiative with a one-day launch event and a two-day training in the four EOWE target provinces in Vietnam, Quang Binh, Binh Dinh, Ninh Thuan and Binh Thuan. The launch events attracted a total of around 200 interested companies. During the launch events, the companies learned more about the support package and the application and selection procedure of the initiatives. The following two-day training sessions introduced the concepts of inclusive business, women’s economic empowerment and gender-responsiveness in business and focused on proposal writing skills.
The companies applying for the support package must co-invest the other 51% or more of the total investment, of which at least 30% is in cash and the rest is in in-kind contribution with proven value, like newly-purchased equipment and machines.
Right after the training, interested enterprises will send in their concept notes with a summary of their proposed gender-responsive inclusive business idea. Shortlisted enterprises will be asked to develop a full proposal, including detailed budgets and activity plans. SNV is expected to complete the selection of businesses and business proposals by the end of October 2017, and carry out local operations right after the parties sign the contract.