GIS – 26 October, 2018: A National Sales Exhibition, which is bringing around 100 women entrepreneurs from Social Welfare Centres, was inaugurated yesterday at the Municipal Council of Beau Bassin/Rose Hill. The objective is to provide women entrepreneurs who are benefitting from training programmes at the different Centres a platform to showcase their creativity and know-how in different fields spanning agro-industry, textile and handicrafts.
The four-day event is organised by the Social Welfare Division of the Ministry of Gender Equality, Child Development and Family Welfare. The aim is also to allow participants create networking links with their peers and promote income-generating and entrepreneurial activities.
On this occasion, the Vice-Prime Minister, Minister of Local Government and Outer Islands, Minister of Gender Equality, Child Development and Family Welfare, Mrs Fazila Jeewa-Daureeawoo, spoke about putting women at the centre of development as it is crucial to have an inclusive society.
According to the Vice-Prime Minister, women’s participation has to be enhanced in different sectors of the Mauritian economy as women make up 52% of our population and can contribute manifold in ensuring that the country becomes successful on the economic plane but also within the society. In fact, women play a massive role within the society as they take care of the family and the family is an important pillar and forms the basis of any society and hence we have to recognise the contribution of women, she emphasised.
In addition, Mrs Jeewa-Daureeawoo recalled that a lot of progress has been achieved with regards to women’s emancipation. Before the year 1980, women had limited rights and then legislations were introduced to enable women to integrate the labour market. Women had thus brought about a major contribution to the socioeconomic development of the country and are still doing so presently, she pointed out.
Speaking about women entrepreneurs, the Vice-Prime Minister said that a lot of efforts is being put in so as to give them the right support to further develop their entrepreneurial skills and become independent. However, she highlighted, aspiring women entrepreneurs have to take into account market, risk and financial factors before deciding to set up a small enterprise. Women also have to believe in their own capacities and be realistic, she said.
One of the major priorities of Government, said Mrs Jeewa-Daureeawoo, remains ensuring the promotion of women’s welfare and encouraging them to set up their own businesses. These women should also start to think how to start a business in new sectors especially those which hold a lot of expansion prospects other than the traditional ones, she added.
As regards domestic violence in Mauritius, the Vice-Prime Minister indicated that a lot is being done to ensure that women’s rights are respected and to reduce domestic violence cases. The law has been amended and a lot of emphasis is being put on prevention and early intervention, she stated. Work is progressing with regards to the setting up of an integrated centre and where all women having issues related to domestic violence can have their grievances recorded with rapid follow-up actions, she announced.
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