Promoting female empowerment is part of the unique DNA of the Swarovski Foundation. Swarovski highlights its work with Street Business School (SBS) to change the poverty narrative of mothers across Africa through economic education and as the response to COVID-19 continues, our work to support our longstanding partners goes from strength to strength.
With a goal to end extreme poverty by helping women find their entrepreneurial spark, SBS created a social franchise model, teaching other organizations to implement its award-winning entrepreneurial training program. With support from the Swarovski Foundation the program has grown substantially since 2018; there are now 221 Lead Coaches from 97 NGO partner organizations delivering the SBS curriculum in 21countries. In the next four years, these partners will help lift more than36,000 mothers and their 182,000 children out of poverty into new, hopeful futures.
To support this entrepreneurial group of mothers during this challenging time, Street Business School is continuing to help women survive and thrive ensuring communities and families stay informed using SMS technology to communicate vital public health information. Additionally, SBS has created a new business education course called “Get On Your Feet” to further help these resilient mothers.
The impact SBS has had on this community is lifechanging; 89% of women who complete the training have at least one business within two years, with an average income increase of211%. We spotlight one SBS entrepreneur, Jalia, a mother and business owner who sells popcorn, cassava and porridge as well as running errands for neighbors. In response to COVID-19, Jalia says she can’t leave anything to chance during this period of quarantine. While she is no longer running errands, her businesses still generate $5 daily, lifting her household above the global poverty line. Jalia uses these funds to support her children’s basic needs, extending her gratitude to the SBS Coaches and the ways in which SBS made her feel empowered.
“I don’t know where I would be today if it was not for the knowledge you gave us, that even during quarantine, I feel unstoppable and motivated to still earn some income.”
For every motherlike Jalia, SBS is an opportunity to achieve their dreams for themselves and their children. SBS graduates can have an enormous impact raising educated, capable and confident children who can help break the cycle of generational poverty.
Swarovski Foundation supports SBS and the many families who will remain strong beyond COVID-19.