In partnership with the Government of Canada, MEDA’s Feminist Entrepreneurs Growing Green Economies (FEGGE) project will focus on an improved business-enabling environment and facilitation of opportunities for women-owned businesses. FEGGE will focus on and work with small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), small entrepreneurs (SEs), and other actors in the dryland and semi-arid regions of Tanzania.
FEGGE is working to improve the economic prosperity of feminist SMEs by promoting women’s economic empowerment and climate-smart business in Tanzania’s dryland regions. The project focuses on creating partnerships with SMEs, small entrepreneurs, associations, accelerators, service providers, NGOs, and government, to ensure sustainable delivery and impact.
FEGGE is working to create nearly 16,000 decent jobs among SEs, SMEs, and other Key Facilitating Partners (KFPs). These activities will positively impact 22,500 small entrepreneurs (including 20,000 women farmers) and 300 feminist SMEs. Lead Firm matching grants, smart subsidies, and mentorship opportunities are just a few interventions that will be used to create sustainable livelihoods and jobs for feminist SMEs and SEs.
Recent statistics from the Tanzanian government highlighted that women in Tanzania play a substantial role in the economy. They work mainly in the informal agriculture and trade sector. While women’s participation in the overall labor force (80.7%) is higher than that of men (79.6%), only 4% of employed women are in formal paid jobs (compared with 9.8% of men).
Tanzania’s women entrepreneurs can create decent work and lift themselves out of poverty. Still, they face many obstacles that limit their ability to start and grow businesses. These obstacles include a lack of training, skills, resources, legal and mobility barriers, and discriminatory gender attitudes and norms. More significant economic development and better climate change solutions can offset widespread environmental damage. This ecological damage prevents farmers and pastoralists from gaining sustainable livelihoods (FAO 2012).
As men migrate to urban areas and technology becomes more accessible, women can enter the labor force, and in turn, support sustainable markets and improve the social welfare of families and communities. FEGGE will provide improved funding for lead firms and forge partnerships with companies, entrepreneurs, government and associations. These efforts can create decent work and reduce poverty for women entrepreneurs, farmers, and SMEs.
Lead Firms (LFs) are the backbone of the FEGGE project. These partnerships will facilitate access to finance for these LFs, where finance will flow into strengthening the LF’s business and operations, but also flow through to SEs, Women Entrepreneurs, and other SMEs within the value chain in the form of improved technology, training, certification, and formalization – all key to sustainably strengthening value chain capacity and relationships, critical to growth, market expansion, and inclusion.
Application for matching grant awards through the Feminist Entrepreneurs Growing Green Economies(FEGGE) Project. Funding is available for Feminist-Small and Medium Enterprises (F-SMEs) operating in the project’s target sectors (sunflower, maize, rice, dairy, honey, horticulture, and spices) in targeted regions in Dodoma, Arusha, Manyara, Kilimanjaro, Tabora, Simiyu Iringa, Njombe and Shinyanga. Only successful applications meeting the criteria will be contacted directly by MEDA staff to move forward in the application Process.