TANZANIA – Coca-Cola Kwanza, a subsidiary of Coca-Cola Beverages Africa (CCBA), has empowered more than 350 women in the food vending business and recyclers from Dar es Salaam with necessary skills and tools of the trade under its women economic inclusion program, dubbed Mwanamke Shujaa.

The program offered in partnership with Oryx Gas Tanzania Limited and the Institute of Social Work enabled the women to receive training on capital growth, record keeping, customer care, and stress management.

Coca-Cola Kwanza said the 350 women received tools of trade including 100 sets of 15kg Oryx cooking gas cylinders, 100 two-plate stoves, 100 customer benches, and more than 300 kitchen clothing.

During the awarding of the women, the company also launched this year’s chapter, with a target of supporting more than 1,100 women to claim their rightful places in the economy.

The event was graced by Hon. Salma Kikwete (MP), former First Lady of The United Republic of Tanzania and Founder of Wanawake na Maendeleo, an NGO that has supported many women since its introduction in 2006.

Meanwhile, in Uganda, CCBA’s unit Coca-Cola Beverages Uganda (CCBU) has partnered with Busega Youth Development Community (BUYEDECO) to donate over 20 fridges to businesswomen in Rubaga Division, Kampala.

The beneficiaries of this project are women who own small businesses in various areas of Nateete, Nakulabye, Kazo, Bulenga, and Bujjuko, among others.

“This partnership is part of the company’s mission to empower women with a focus on employability, entrepreneurship, and education. The fridges will enable the women to scale their businesses by providing a reliable source of cold storage, thus allowing them to provide a cold and refreshing beverage for all their customers,” CBU Public Affairs and Communications Manager, Pearl Nimusiima said.

The beneficiaries of the project, who had received business management training earlier in the day, were thrilled to receive the fridges and expressed gratitude to CCBU for the skills and tools to help their businesses to thrive.

They noted that the fridges will boost their sales as many consumers prefer cold beverages and water, especially during a hot afternoon.

The move, according to CCBA, is one of CCBU’s many initiatives to empower women, youth, and people with disabilities in the communities in which they operate.

Last year, the company supported the National Association of the Deaf in the Mukono district and Makerere Deaf Community with fridges as a way of improving their businesses.

The BUYEDECO Executive Director, Prince Musanje Rogers, expressed appreciation to CCBU for their contribution to empowering communities, saying the partnership is a great example of how companies can work with communities to make a positive impact. Rogers revealed that it is just the beginning of a collaboration between CCBU and BUYEDECO.

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