Shared Interest Foundation has Swaziland handicraft project all sewn up thanks to Comic Relief

Great news here at Shared Interest HQ, after a nervous post application waiting period we are finally able to announce that Shared Interest Foundation has been awarded £500,000 from Comic Relief to fund business skills training in Swaziland.

We are really excited about the project and look forward to building on the success of our Rwanda training project.

It was following news of our work in Rwanda that a group of budding Swazi entrepreneurs approached us about rolling out something similar in Swaziland. The area is particularly vulnerable as it has a population of less than a million people, yet it has the highest rate of HIV/AIDS in the world.

Andrea and Louise will be working with the Swaziland International Fair Trade Association (SWIFT) to provide training for over 130 Swazi handicraft businesses, meaning that over 3,000 people will benefit from the business support program. Training will include elements such as business planning and marketing along with basic skills such as how to appropriately value products. The scheme will also involve a mentoring system which will see larger organisations supporting the development of smaller groups.

We can’t wait to start working in Swaziland next year. Watch this space for updates on the projects progress…

Swaziland fair trade business

Mrs Nkambule from Gone Rural, a women’s weaving cooperative in Swaziland

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