International Labor Organization (ILO) -WEDGE – Women Entrepreneurship Development and Gender Equality
The Women’s Entrepreneurship Development and Gender Equality (WEDGE) project started implementing its activities in Zambia in 2001. The project has now developed into a programme, the International Labour Organization- Irish Aid (ILO-IA) Partnership Programme with three Components. In phase one of the programme, (2002-2004), WEDGE concentrated on women’s entrepreneurship development. The second phase (2005-2007) of the programme integrated three components of the ILO-IA Partnership Programme in its objectives and activities namely;
■Women’s Entrepreneurship Development and Gender Equality (WEDGE),
■Developing Entrepreneurship among Women with Disabilities (DEWED), and
■Promoting the Employability and Employment of people with disabilities through effective Legislation (PEPDEL).
The immediate objectives of the ILO-IA Partnership Programme are as follows;
■Entrepreneurship Development – Women Entrepreneurs (WEs) with and without disabilities and women living with HIV/AIDS, have increased to more equitable environment as well as Business Development Services (BDS) including Basic Business Skills (BBS) and entrepreneurship tool such as Gender and Entrepreneurship Together: GET Ahead for Women Enterprise and Improve Your Business (IYB) training.
■Financial Services – WEs including those with disabilities and women living with HIV/AIDS have increased access to financial services and related support services, including micro-finance, savings and credit services.
■Market Access – WEs including those with disabilities and women living with HIV/ AIDS have increased market access and developed marketable technical skills.
■Skills Training – WEs including those with disabilities, women living with HIV/AIDS and laid off women workers have increased access to both formal and non-formal technical vocational skills training opportunities.
■Stronger Associations – Representatives associations of WEs and persons with disabilities in Zambia have increased capacity to provide voice, support and enterprise development services to their members and
■Disability Legislation – Government officials, social partners, Zambia Agency for People with Disabilities (ZAPD) and other relevant stakeholders in Zambia have increased capacity to promote, individually and collaboratively the employability and employment of self