Unlocking Opportunities: Tech Herfrica’s EquipHer Project Drives Digital Inclusion and Economic Empowerment in Cycle 3
Cycle 3 of Tech Herfrica’s EquipHer Project proved to be another significant step in empowering female farmers and traders in underserved communities. With the generous support of dedicated partners and sponsors, including Primera Microfinance Bank and Tech Herfrica’s Project Fund, a total of 120 mobile devices have been distributed to date, facilitating digital transformation among the participants. This article highlights the key achievements, challenges faced, and the impact recorded during this cycle.
Out of the 45 women trained during Cycle 3, 40 were provided with mobile devices after completing the training. Due to the varying literacy levels among the participants, the Nokia 105 Dual Sim (2022) Edition, designed specifically for Africa, was chosen. The women received comprehensive training on making and receiving calls, using USSD codes for bank transactions, and utilizing the device’s radio functionality to stay informed. Additionally, the devices served as a communication tool between the women and their customers, connecting them to herlocalmarket, Tech Herfrica’s e-commerce platform.
During the distribution phase, some challenges arose as the program experienced a high demand from women in the market who had not been profiled or trained. To address this, the program team reassured them of subsequent cycles and informed them about the generation of another database comprising 50 women, who would be included in future cycles.
The achievements of Cycle 3 showcase the positive outcomes of the EquipHer Project:
- 45 women were trained, and 40 women received mobile devices, bringing excitement to those who previously had no access to personal phones and were sharing with their family members.
- 100% of the women expressed their desire and willingness to leverage e-commerce platforms for business growth, recognizing the potential of digital platforms.
- Out of the 45 women profiled, an encouraging 84.4% expressed their desire to access health insurance plans, highlighting the increasing awareness of the importance of healthcare coverage.
- Similarly, 91.51% of the women indicated a desire to have a micro-pension plan, demonstrating their evolving perspective on long-term financial planning and security.
Beyond the impact recorded, additional findings emerged during Cycle 3:
- Only 29 out of the 45 women had personal bank accounts, with most relying on family members’ accounts. The project aims to address this by promoting financial inclusion and encouraging the women to establish their own accounts.
- Out of the 45 women, 40 possessed National Identification Numbers, indicating the need to raise awareness and support them in obtaining these essential identification documents.
Cycle 3 of the EquipHer Project exemplifies the ongoing commitment of Tech Herfrica and its partners to empower women in underserved communities. By providing mobile devices and comprehensive training, the project enables women to access digital tools, financial services, and e-commerce platforms, fostering economic growth and social inclusion. With each cycle, the project strives to expand its impact and empower more women, ensuring that no one is left behind in the digital era.