Béatrice Gougjo is president of the women’s group “Mewesomahou” at Wawata Epicenter in Benin. With 22 members, the group was created out of the dream and the will of brave women who came together in order to improve their incomes for its members.
“Apart from periodical meetings that we hold to discuss issues of cleanliness and sanitation of our living environment, we also carry out income generating activities such as the production of cassava products (gari and tapioca) and palm oil processing,” Béatrice explained.
After facing some difficulties with low profits that resulted in the loss of some members, the group was able to increase their profits with help from The Hunger Project-Benin’s Entrepreneurship Development Program. The program allowed the group to generate higher revenue through business training.
The program taught the women how to make quality products and sell them at a higher price. “The quality of the product gave us many opportunities,” Beatrice said. In 2014, the group took part in the Independence Fare in Cotonou where their products were completely sold out.
Additional training resulted in high demands from other regions in the country, as well as in further market expansion. “These achievements have fundamentally changed our perception of things because we have been initiated to notions of company creation, personal and collective development, organizational and financial management and how to look for market,” remarked Béatrice.
The Hunger Project-Benin concentrates on building women’s capacities as well as processing practices including quality standards and conditioning. With The Hunger Project-Benin’s support, both technically and financially, the women of Mewesomahou have become their own agents of change.
Read about The Hunger Project in Benin