Grant Start Date
20 October 2022
Grant End Date
19 October 2024
OBJECTIVE OF THE PROJECT
Conectad@s 2.0 seeks to increase the resilience and empowerment of 500 women entrepreneurs in 5 departments of Colombia (Casanare, Cundinamarca, Huila, Nariño, Cauca), enabling women entrepreneurs to continue their economic recovery after the pandemic and to cope with future economic, social and environmental impacts. The Internet and technology will be used firstly as a means to strengthen participants’ entrepreneurial, socio-emotional, financial and digital skills, as well as to improve participants’ awareness and knowledge on women empowerment, gender roles & stereotypes, gender-based violence and the channels to support them in these situations. The Internet will, additionally, be used to integrate digital tools into their businesses’ management, marketing and commercialization, making their businesses more competitive and sustainable.
WHY IS THIS PROJECT IMPORTANT?
Microbusinesses run by women face even more challenges than those run by men, given severe income constraints, low financial inclusion levels, additional unpaid care work responsibilities, limited administrative management skills, and lower levels of digital inclusion, which have only been exacerbated by the COVID-19 crisis. Regarding financial inclusion, women still face barriers to accessing and using financial products and services. Furthermore, although they have higher expectations to innovate in their products and services, they face limited managerial skills and a lack of business networks to learn, identify and access resources to manage their business; thus, having to close their business for not being profitable or due to lack of finance. Moreover, the crisis generated by COVID-19 accelerated digitalization processes and, thus, has “emphasized the importance of digital inclusion for economic resilience during crises”. However, digitalization expansion did not go along with inclusive access to the Internet, digital devices and knowledge on how to use technology, thus widening the digital gender gap, with wider effects on the most underserved from low-income backgrounds, women with disabilities and women with children.
This project allows women to improve their knowledge about the digital services available for business management, marketing and sales; increase their confidence and capacity to manage their business; achieve an effective digital transition; have the possibility to achieve higher incomes, greater autonomy and agency within their households and in their communities, as well as to strengthen their skills to manage a prosperous & digitally connected business; to have the capacity to face and adapt to future shocks, and to have greater knowledge to recognize and prevent situations of GBV.
MEDIA AND PUBLICATIONS
See below for publications and other articles related to the project.