Women Land Laborers Become Entrepreneurs in Off-Season
In Myanmar, ICCO supports creating income opportunities for women in the mungbean value chain. During the off-farm season, women land laborers need to have alternative income in order to get a stable income.
Starting small home-based businesses offers great opportunities for women land laborers. In rural areas, there is a great market potential for food and consumer products like snacks, soaps, washing liquid, etc. Women can easily access raw materials as input such as mung beans to make mung bean snacks or mung bean body lotion.
Lobby to Receive Training
On 25 January, women from the Yangon Region gathered together with Staff Officers from the Yangon Region Small Scale Industrial Department (SSID) that is under the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation (MoALI). Here, the women asked if they could access the “Agriculture based Food & Consumer Goods Making Trainings” from SSID. This is an important training for the women in order for them to start home-based businesses in their villages.
Photo: women meet with staff officers from SSID
15-Days Business Training for Women
During the meeting it was agreed that SSID will give a 15-days training to women in Kayan and Thongwa townships. The training will focus on making food and consumer products like snacks, soaps and washing liquids. The women will learn about writing a business plan, administration, finance, food safety guidelines and communication.
After the training, the women will get a certificate from SSID – for which they of course must follow the international Food and Drugs Administration guidelines – with which they can make an official Micro & Small Business Registration. With this registration, the women can get finance from micro finance institutions. According to SSID, every woman can start a micro business if they have 20,000 kyat (USD 15) as a capital investment. This is a realistic amount of money for most women. ICCO also provided start-up funds for women, along with training on Business Planning and Basic Financial Literacy.
About the Project
This activity is part of ICCO’s ‘Pulses, People, Planet and Profit’ (P4) project. This project aims to improve the income of smallholder mungbean farmers, including landless female farm laborers. One of the activities is 54 women groups representing 700 women are initiating home-based micro businesses. Four women representatives from four townships are doing regular monitoring to those women groups under the mentoring and coaching support of ICCO staff.