Weber Shandwick partnered with DOVE® Chocolate and CARE, a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty as they announced the next phase of their partnership to empower women in the cocoa growing communities of Côte d’Ivoire, where 40% of the world’s cocoa is sourced.
The initiative—called “She’s in Business”—launched on International Women’s Day 2019 when the first stone was laid on a new community marketplace for women-led businesses in the village of Gueyo, a centrally located commerce area nestled among the cocoa fields. The new marketplace will not only provide space for women to sell their goods and grow their income-generating activities, it will also offer year-round protection from the elements as well as working electricity and hygienic conditions in which to conduct their business. New meeting space will allow women to organize training sessions and rent out for additional income. It is a significant step on the road to financial independence for the women of Gueyo and a bold and inspiring move by DOVE® Chocolate.
Since the partnership between DOVE® Chocolate and CARE began in 2015, it has supported the development and evolution of small female-driven enterprises in cocoa farming communities using the CARE Village Savings and Loan Associations (VSLA) methodology. Today, nearly 300 VSLAs operate in 39 communities in Côte d’Ivoire with thousands of members, 80 percent of whom are women. The VSLAs have become essential in helping women achieve financial independence and empowerment in household financial decision-making. In turn, the cocoa-growing communities have benefited as the resources generated are reinvested in by the women themselves. For more information, please visit www.dovechocolate.com.