Domestic workers in Trinidad and Tobago develop a business plan for their cooperative

On May 12 to 13, the ILO organised a workshop with domestic workers and their union in Trinidad and Tobago to develop a business plan for their cooperative. The workshop used the C-BED methodology, a low cost, action-based and participatory group learning approach designed by the ILO to help entrepreneurs and micro-business owners in planning and improving their businesses.

Actualité | Trinidad and Tobago | 22 juin 2017
Participants of the workshop
ILO has supported the National Union of Domestic Workers (NUDE) in Trinidad and Tobago in strengthening the Service Workers Centre Cooperative Society Limited (SWCC). The cooperative was formed by NUDE in 2014 to improve working conditions of domestic workers and to provide them with a legal entity recognized by employers. Cooperative enterprises can provide a practical and relevant model for domestic workers to improve their livelihoods and conditions of work. They can offer domestic workers a collective voice to advocate for their rights with employers and policy makers, as well as help them jointly negotiate better wages, safer working conditions and improved employment protection.

As a follow-up for the previous consultation and workshop, the ILO Office for the Caribbean, with support from the ILO COOP Unit, organised a workshop with SWCC on May 12th to 13th. This workshop brought together 19 SWCC members with the aim of enabling the understanding on the process of business planning and its various components, and to support the members to develop a business plan for SWCC.

Participants doing group work
Lecturers of the Cipriani College of Labour and Co-operative Studies (CCLCS) facilitated the workshop incorporating the use of Community-Based Enterprise Development (C-BED) methodology, a low cost, easy to implement training approach designed by the ILO for helping entrepreneurs and micro-business owners to plan and improve their businesses. In this action-based, participatory group learning methodology, participants work together in small groups to solve problems, and through sharing existing knowledge and experiences, they help each other understand formal business concepts, rather than depending on external trainers or resources. All the participants engaged actively in the group exercises including business plan overview, business profile writing, market analysis, marketing strategies development and management planning.

For the exercise of developing business plan, the participants worked on the background information such as the vision, mission and philosophy of SWCC, which provided them with a good opportunity to revisit their identity as a cooperative.

The ILO will continue to support the SWCC in follow up activities, which will include a three-day workshop on cooperative management for the Board of Directors and members, and capacity development training in occupational safety and health and the development and use of service contracts.