To Sunlight Nigeria, women empowerment is expressed through programs and initiatives that are focused on improving the lives and wellbeing of women. When talking about women empowerment, these programs and initiatives serve as means that help provide women with the tools needed to take their destiny into their own hands; enabling their participation in economic decision-making.
Empowerment of women is a necessity for the development of a community since it enhances both the quality and the quantity of human resources available for development. This year, Sunlight has shared this vision through various programs that are helping women develop life skills, own a trade and also showcase their crafts to the world through an already established platform.
Here is a complete timeline of Sunlight programs, initiatives and events around women empowerment for this year;
International Women’s Day Celebration 2019
This years’ International Women’s Day was themed #BalanceforBetter, which is a bid to create a gender-balanced world. Sunlight Nigeria understands that a balanced world is a better world. This year, women at major bus parks in Nigeria were celebrated with a surprise visit from the Sunlight Nigeria refunding their fares and bearing gifts in goody bags.
Sunlight SHERO – Mother’s Day Celebration
The 2019 Sunlight Shero campaign celebrated the resilience and strength of single moms in the society. Aimed at breaking the stereotype and helping the community see that being a single mum is as a result of multiple factors. Nigerians nominated single mothers, three of whom won much-needed home makeovers because, after a hard day’s job, every mother deserves to come home to some convenience.
The Shakti Program; Empowering over 3000 Women
The Unilever Shakti initiative is creating an inclusive society by providing business training and funding; thus improving livelihoods, to women in rural areas. The initiative provides women in rural areas with Unilever products as capital, these products are simultaneously empowering these women to start and own their own businesses and expanding Unilever distribution into uncharted areas of rural Nigeria. The initiative has 3,000 Shakti women with earnings growth of up to 400% and who have contributed 1.8 million Euros to Unilever’s business turnover since inception.
Sunlight Fashion Focus Fund 2019
Sunlight in collaboration with Style House Files, the conveners of the Lagos Fashion Week, through the Fashion Focus Fund, this year is empowering women through fashion. In April, Two Nigerian fashion designers who are Alumnae of the Fashion Focus Fund; Chechi Arinze and Titi Belo, benefitted from Sunlight’s initiative to support young female entrepreneurs. They both received the sum of two million Naira (NGN 2, 000, 000) each to support their businesses. They were chosen for their passion to make an impact and to empower others; both of which align with Sunlight’s mission.
The Fashion Focus Talks
Sunlight is an official co-sponsor of Lagos Fashion Week’s 2019 edition of the Fashion Focus Talks. This year’s Fashion Focus Talks in Lagos, Sunlight sponsored Mai Atafo, a renowned Fashion Designer and Creative Director of Mai Atafo to speak on the Topic ‘Beyond Creativity’ the official theme of this year’s talks. Mai Atafo was invited to educate young talents in the industry on how to excel beyond creativity. The event happened at the Mike Adenuga Centre, Ikoyi.
The Sunlight Collection
Sunlight partnered with two womenswear brands VATHISWA and ZURIZOLA, run by Morenikeji Akinsola and Chibuzor Emordi to create The Sunlight Collection.
The Sunlight Collection is inspired by the Sunlight Woman; a fun-loving optimist who always sees the cup as half full! In creating the collection, Sunlight also partnered with five (5) female entrepreneurs; Olabunmi Aboderin-Talabi, founding publisher, Clever Clogs Books, Bolaji Ayinde-Sekoni, creative director, Nouva Couture, Ifeoma Okoye, Founder, PaintedNails NG and Ex-beauty Queen, Bella Rose Okojie, Morning Show Host at City 105.1FM and Tech entrepreneur, and Nelly Agbogu, Founder Naija Brand Chick and Nellies Nigeria.
These women shared how they are empowering women in their different careers and also, how their goals are closely aligned with Sunlight empowerment programs.
The collection will be available at the Lagos Fashion Week 2019.
For more information about Unilever and its brands, please visit the website.