Not-for-profit organisation The Women’s Bakery announced in June that it would be expanding its program, providing bread for more East African schoolchildren.
The social enterprise group, founded in 2015, hires women in Rwanda to run bakeries that supply bread to their communities. Through training and education, The Women’s Bakery provides women with jobs skills and employment opportunities to take care of their families and invest in their communities.
The organisation hires East African women, offers them 150-plus hours of accredited training and then offers them employment at a bakery in East Africa. Through employment the women are supported not only with a paycheck, but also mental health services, family planning, insurance, financial literacy and many other trainings and services.
The operational bakery will go on to sell bread into the community, and once it becomes profitable and self-sustaining, The Women’s Bakery takes those learnings and success to open another bakery to start the process again.
The Women’s Bakery also launched the One Bread Program, which provides bread to local schools through one of its bakeries. By providing children a snack at school, educators have found that attendance and attentiveness has improved among the students. The initial pilot program was a success, tripling the production at the bakery.
The organisation’s eventual goal is to open 10 bakeries that empowers 100 women not only in Rwanda but other countries in East Africa. Currently, there are three bakeries operating, with one reaching profitability in March and another on track to reach profitability in July.