In 2018, after the construction of our second campus, Bali WISE is relaunching its Women’s Business Education & Development Program, targeting individual women and women’s cooperatives currently engaging or willing to engage in sustainable and successful business as well as already existing businesses that intent to become more sustainable by employing women.
Many Balinese women run micro and small-scale businesses – often without even considering themselves as business women. Selling everyday commodities in small warungs, selling jamu on the streets, running spa salons, laundry services or souvenir shops – the range of economic activities women are constantly engaging in to earn an income are diverse. Above all, they are absolutely substantial to meet their families’ and their own financial needs.
Nevertheless, the majority of these women lack the necessary economic know-how to get the most out of their businesses. Never having had formal training in fundamental business or financial matters, they are far from generating the biggest possible profit from their business, leaving much space for crucial improvement. Likewise, there are a lot of women out there willing to contribute independently to their family income, yet not knowing how to accomplish this.
This is where Bali WISE with its newly built Community Environment & Skills Center comes into play. We will provide qualified Balinese business women and business women to-be with technical skills and general business education. Teaching them fundamental business and financial knowledge as well as certain craftsmanship, we help them to later help themselves and their peers to successfully run sustainable and self-sufficient small-scale businesses.
Likewise, we will cooperate with foreign investors and local corporations throughout Indonesia that plan to either start up sustainable businesses in Indonesia or intend to change their already existing companies into more sustainable ones. Provided they can guarantee employment and training opportunities exclusively for women, we will collaborate with appropriate business partners to conjointly spread the spirit of gender equality and equal business opportunities for women throughout the country.
(A) Women’s Business Education
Key Competencies to be taught
The basic competency constantly and repeatedly to be taught is confidence. Many women starting micro businesses are often only, if all, used to be employees, but not to do business by themselves. And even the ones already having businesses often don’t consider themselves as independent competent business women but just as helping hands to their family household or the merely support to their husbands’, brothers’, uncles’ work.
Consequently, these women lack a significant deal of self-confidence which would enable them to work in a more self-sufficient and assertive way. A complete business education approach must therefore include providing confidence and a `Cando-Attitude’ to the participants from the first to the last lesson, since it is a very personal and long-term learning process.
Basic Business Education
- financial management skills (budget planning & reporting)
- staff management skills
- marketing & customer care
To run a business successfully and most of all sustainably, the aforementioned business skills are essential. Yet, micro-businesses usually tend to be rather passion or intuition driven, resulting in a less target-oriented, less efficient working manner which in turn leads to critical profit loss or even the complete failure of the business.
Therefore, imparting basic knowledge about financial fundamentals and teaching general business skills, is a crucial step towards long-lasting and profit-generating businesses.
Our business education approach addresses both groups, women and women’s cooperatives who already run businesses as well as those who still wish to get started. Especially for the latter ones we have some amazing craft projects and are still creating new ones. The basic business education will be an essential part of the program also for them.
(B) Existing Micro-Businesses Assistance for Individuals or Cooperatives
Women and women’s cooperatives who already run businesses are often in urgent need of some general business training. Although already operating in their small-scale entrepreneurial fields like laundry services or warungs for quite a long time, many women still lack the profound business knowledge that would enable them to generate more profit and prevent severe loss caused by the incapacity to keep record of the daily cash flow and to calculate the relation between income and expenses.
Bali WISE will not only provide fundamental business education as above to these women in question but also act as a constant consulting partner for its beneficiaries. Women and women’s coops once educated and trained by BaliWISE will always be welcome to continuously draw on our assistance and are invited to seek further support in our follow-up meetings. We offer yearly business plan and budget monitoring to review what has been achieved so far and to anticipate further steps. Monthly marketing campaign and sales workshops will complement the advising service.
(C) Bali WISE Business Models for Individuals or Cooperatives
Our Women’s Business Education Program equally focuses on women who still wish to get started and get involved in a business, with the possibility to become independent self-employed business women themselves. Nevertheless, the imparting of the above described general business knowledge will be an essential part also for these women.
Currently, we are able to provide professional technical skills education in the fields of weaving, organic dying and soap recycling at our newly built Communty Environment & Skills Center. There, we teach interested and qualified women the almost forgotten weaving techniques with traditional weaving looms and chemical-free dyeing techniques with biological plant-based colors obtained from our center-intern plant nursery. The outcome are beautiful handmade organic scarfs ecologically dyed and already up for sale in some selected stores around Bali. That way, we not only promote traditional craftsmanship but also contribute to protecting Bali’s rich cultural heritage in an environmentally very sustainable way.
Our soap recycling project has as well the potential to grow and be developed into a self-sufficient business. Currently collecting and recycling used soap bars from various hotels in Bali into new ones for the free distribution to orphanages and other people in need, it could be thought of a possibility how to turn used soap bars in sellable products – of course without neglecting our charitable support for the poor.
Bali WISE Business Models with a team ready for training includes
- Weaving Futures – teaching and showing weaving techniques to tourists and selling scarves to them.
- Natural Dyes – teaching tourists how to make natural dyes and how to dye threads and fabrics.
- SOAP Recycling – collecting and recycling used soap and teach tourists how to make recycled soap.
Future projects include snail farming aiming for the facilitation of a more protein-rich nutrition of the poor, the cultivation of Aloe Vera plants and a variety of herbs to support the organic production of aloe gels and jamu as well as the general promotion of a healthy diet, inspiring local warungs to sell more organic food and products.
(D) Women’s Jobs through Sustainable Business Development Assistance
With the second part of our program we intend to cooperate with potential investors from within and outside Indonesia who plan to build up a sustainable business in Indonesia. According to our vision, gender equality in the area of employment and entrepreneurship can only be achieved by offering sustainable jobs also to women and give them the chance for equally engaging in business which has been made very difficult, if not even completely denied to them for already too long.
Therefore, we expect our potential partner’s business to be mainly run by women and to provide some training opportunities for them as well. Further premises like reasonable salaries of at least the minimum wage and the provision of health insurance for all employees must be equally guaranteed.
(1) Foreign Investors
The primary job is to make sure these investors do not get ripped off in the many ways possible and make sure they have agreements in place with local communities, where they will manufacture, farm or provide service. As a Foundation we want to promote full circle business and on the humanitarian side, jobs and sub contract work for mostly Indonesian women.
(2) Sustainable Business partnerships with local corporations
Although every support ‘from outside’ is much valued and highly needed, positive change depends first and foremost on the forces ‘from within’. Therefore, it is essential to cooperate with local Indonesian corporations to implement the idea of socially and environmentally sustainable businesses in a regionally nation-wide context.
(3) Companies that want to change to become sustainable/full circle corps
After ten years’ experience in successfully running a socially and environmentally sustainable foundation, we are ready to take up the next challenge by collaborating with existing businesses intending to become sustainable. By liaising with appropriate companies, we will conjointly be working on our mission to promote a sustainable, gender-equal business attitude throughout Indonesia – for a better, socially responsible world!