By Chinelo Obogo
A Non-Governmental Organisation, Stand Against Female Marginalisation and Abuse (SAFEMA), has revealed that it would host a contest tagged, ‘Miss Enterprise Africa’, aimed at empowering women with the skills and resources to make a living.
Speaking during a press conference in Lagos, the Project Coordinator of SAFEMA, Fisayo Ajayi, said the beauty pageant, which is focused on entrepreneurship, was set up to help as a way to help women get the needed skills and resources to run their businesses successfully.
She revealed that experts from different fields would be on hand to coach the shortlisted candidates and they would also have the opportunity to present their business plans and get funding for them.
‘Successful applicants will be required to develop and present a business plan, amongst other activities, with the overall best emerging as winner with a cash prize of $1000 to start up the presented business and sponsored trip to Kigali, Rwanda. Winners in other categories will get consolation prizes and funding opportunities,” she said.
Ola Ajibola who is the founder of SAFEMA, an initiative of PRMP Digital Limited, said the event is a contest for young, beautiful, culture-oriented and business savvy girls between the ages of 18 to 29, who are ambitious, passionate and have start-up or business ideas that are scalable.
He said SAFEMA has been able to reach out to over 3000 females from all ages across Nigeria and that the pageant is an initiative to inspire smart and hardworking young girls who are seeking legitimate means to success without compromising morals.
“It is an established fact that the girl child are a part of the nation’s human resource and if properly educated and mentored, can yield a lot of benefits such as increased productivity, development of skills, increased output, economic change and improved quality of life leading to long-lasting national development. Hence, MEA is expected to create a platform for learning, development and inspiration to young girls. The pageant will highlight education, intelligence, leadership, independence, commitment to hard work, and entrepreneurship.
“About 1000 young female entrepreneurs will be shortlisted at the first stage and thereafter, 100 of them will advance to the second stage where they will attend a three-day coaching by professionals in start-up and entrepreneurship, business development, branding, marketing, sales, etiquette, human management, finance and investment.
“Out of the 100 shortlisted, 20 will be selected based on an open test and moved into a camp house for five days where they will undergo further coaching, mentoring and other activities, after which a winner will emerge at a grand finale on December 12. Registration is free and can be done on SAFEMA’s website,” Ajibola said.