The Taiwan ICDF, the Rotary Club of Belize and the Love Foundation signed a memorandum of understanding today, focused on female empowerment. The support is coming through programs, which are geared at assisting female entrepreneurs to take their business ideas from concept to final product. The partnership has the support of the Government of Belize. The Love Foundation’s Managing Director, Deborah Sewell and the CEO in the Office of the Prime Minister, Narda Garcia spoke at this morning’s ceremony.
Deborah Sewell, Executive Director, The Love Foundation: “This funding will provide the Love Foundation and its partners the resources to impart this knowledge to our girls and young women. It will provide seed money to help young female entrepreneurs get their businesses or their ideas off the ground. It will provide mentorship and capacity building. Provide positive feedback and help these young entrepreneurs to develop a sustainable income stream. It is at Rotary’s core belief that women are essential to true economic development and that women’s economic empowerment contributes to a nation’s growth.”
Narda Garcia, CEO, Office of the Prime Minister: “The percentage of women who decide to pursue an entrepreneurial career is however lower than that of men. There are many factors that negatively impact women’s decisions to venture into starting a business. These factors are diverse and the literature suggests that the attributions of society and the different socialization processes relating to men and women may create obstacles for women due to the unequal distribution of assets and services, educational objectives and daily life activity expectations. According to several studies females are 63% less likely than males to obtain external financing in terms of risk capital and the most significant part of the gap derives from differences in gender. Thankfully we are beginning to see a shift and women especially here in Belize as I highlighted before are more and more challenging the status quo in positioning themselves within male dominated roles in th workplace, within our communities, and even in government.”
Like the Rotary Club, female empowerment remains an important focal point for the Taiwan Government. Ambassador David Kuan-Chou Chien and the Executive Director of the Taiwan ICDF reiterated their support to Belize in this regard.
David Kuan-Chou Chien, Ambassador of Taiwan to Belize: “Indeed women are the lifeblood of our economy, the backbone or our family. Women play a crucial role in this country’s national development and they are the most important pillar to support our society. Therefore we are honored to be partnering with the Rotary Club and the Government of Belize to play a helping hand to advance the empowerment of Belizean women. Through this project we hope to share Taiwan’s successful experience in women empowerment with our Belizean friends.”
Robert Pan, Executive Director, Taiwan ICDF: “The Rotary Club will connect with the young girls and women and equip them with the social, emotional, and the basic literacy. This knowledge is fundamental to improving the quality of life of every human being.”
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