Women in self employment (WISE) a partner of L’OEUVRE LÉGER in Ethiopia is dedicated to the eradication of poverty in urban areas. Since it was founded in 1998 WISE has worked with over 100,000 women from four poor areas in Addis Abeba. WISE provides access to financial services, as well as numerous other services, to girls and women so that they can improve their quality of life. They target the economic and social development of women as well as gender equality.
WISE invests the start-up money for women’s help groups, who then pool their money together and then lend each other the funds needed. WISE also encourages women to create small coops.
Genet Kenebe’s story
Genet was born in Addis-Abeba, the capital of Ethiopia. However she spent her early years in Muger a town situated 35km from Addis. When she was a child. Genet had to work and go to school. She had to support her family. In 1994 she got married and returned to Addis-Abeba to live. Genet is one of the women who benefits from WISE’s support. In 2000 she received her first aid which enabled her to borrow 500 birrs (about $71) so she could buy cereals for re-sale. Today Genet and 2 other employees have a capital of 45,000 birrs ($2,800) and their daily sales are of 400 birrs ($25)