The Uganda Women Entrepreneurs Association Limited(UWEAL) has launched a shs25 billion fundraising drive that will see them collect funds for the construction of an incubation centre to benefit women and girls in form of business mentoring.
Speaking during the launch of the fundraising drive on Wednesday, UWEAL chairperson, Dr.Barbara Ofwono Buyondo said the new incubation centre will be located at their two acre piece of land in Namanve industrial park.
“We want to set up the first ever women incubation centre in Uganda to promote the development of competitive, profitable and sustainable businesses in agriculture and ICT among women and girl entrepreneurs,” she said.
She noted that the incubation centre will be crucial in addressing challenges faced by women and girl entreprenuers in both formal and informal business activities around the country.
According to Constance Kekihembo, the UWEAL CEO, well as there are already other incubation centres, they are not gender sensitive and this has seen many women denied chance to be mentored.
“Our biggest challenge has been women benefitting from these incubation centres. In the other incubation centre, it is the most aggressive entrepreneurs who are considered yet many women don’t fall under this,”Kekihembo said.
“Under the new incubation centre, there will be a leveled ground and platform for people from the grassroots to participate in being mentored.”
The UWEAL chairperson explained that the new incubation centre will target over four million people through linkages to all parts of the country.
“We want to have satellite systems and be more practical to involve women from various parts of the country. We will concentrate on mentoring women in enterprise culture, leadership, startups, green economy, innovation, growth and sustainability.”
Dr.Barbara Ofwono Buyondo, the UWEAL chairperson, the incubation centre will provide mentoring services among others to women entrepreneurs in the three sectors of agro processing, ICT and a business centre.
“We want to create 40,000 jobs every year from this incubation centre in ICT, agribusiness and wood and metal as we make women businesses effective and competitive,” she noted.
According to UWEAL, construction of the shs25 billion incubation centre will begin with the agribusiness section and others will follow later.
“We will reach out to government, members of the public, UWEAL members and development partners to put a brick on the incubation centre as part of the fundraising drive to ensure we make history by realizing the dream that started 10 years ago,” said Dr. Barbara Ofwono Buyondo.