Message at the launch of the Women Entrepreneurs Peer Programme

By Mr Khalid Hassan, Director, ILO Country Office for the Philippines at the launch of the Women Entrepreneurs Peer Programme of the ILO, Great Women and J.P. Morgan, 9 February 2022, Manila, Philippines

Statement | Manila, Philippines | 09 February 2022
  • Ms Jeannie Javelosa of GREAT Women
  • Ms Sari Mortel of J.P. Morgan Philippines
  • Volunteer coaches from J.P. Morgan Philippines;
  • Women entrepreneurs;
  • Partners, guests, ladies and gentlemen, magandang umaga sa inyong lahat.
Welcome to the launch of the ILO Rebuilding Better Women Entrepreneurship Peer and Technical Support Programme! This is in partnership with the GREAT Women and our donor, J.P. Morgan.

Women entrepreneurs have been disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Most of them operate in sectors that have been badly hit coupled with increased care burden, so they need help for their businesses to survive and thrive.

The ILO, with the support of J.P. Morgan, launched in 2021, the Rebuilding Better: Fostering Business Resilience Post-COVID-19 Project.

The project aims to help women entrepreneurs in the National Capital Region and Cebu, recover from the pandemic, by adopting more sustainable and resilient business models, through strengthened access to vital support services in training, access to finance and access to markets.

The Peer Programme we launch today offers a unique combination of technical learning sessions on access to finance and access to markets, peer support and networking opportunities, to help women entrepreneurs flourish and expand their businesses.

We salute women entrepreneurs here for their resilience to survive and thrive during these challenging times. You are an inspiration.

Let me also thank our partner, Great Women Philippines, who opened doors of opportunity for women entrepreneurs to work in solidarity together here and across ASEAN.

Most importantly, let me acknowledge our donor J.P. Morgan Philippines, for the partnership and mentorship support through their volunteer programme. The J.P. Morgan Philippines team will co-lead the technical learning sessions and the multiplier sessions.

Thank you for sharing your time and expertise with women entrepreneurs. You are not only helping them, but also their families, workers, and communities.

Through entrepreneurship, women gain access to livelihood opportunities and decent work, and become active contributors to the economic growth and the sustainable development of the country.

We need to invest in the potential of women entrepreneurs and help them expand beyond the micro and small levels of enterprises.

The Decent Work Country Programme of the Philippines recognizes this need to increase the capacity of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in creating inclusive and sustainable employment. The DWCP promotes an enabling environment that supports development and creation of sustainable and resilient enterprises.

Women entrepreneurs play an important role in building more resilient and sustainable enterprises. Strategic support for women entrepreneurs should thus be part of an inclusive and human-centered recovery from the crisis.

This is in line with the ILO’s Global Call to Action for an inclusive, sustainable, and resilient recovery from COVID-19 that is human-centred.

The programme we launch today will indeed contribute to make this happen.
We count on your support for the success of this programme. Together we can help women entrepreneurs amid all the challenges and build a better future of work that leaves no one behind.

Maraming salamat po (Thank you very much)!