Access Bank marks 7th anniversary of ‘W’ Initiative with Pan-African Women’s Conference
Access Bank Ghana PLC has hosted leading women across Africa, in a Pan-African Conference as part of activities marking the seventh anniversary of its flagship women’s Initiative ‘W.’
The conference organised in partnership with Scale Up Africa on the theme “Woman, be Unstoppable; Break the Bias,” created a platform for women to collectively promote a world free of bias, stereotypes, and discrimination and embrace one that is diverse, equitable, and inclusive.
It also sought to inspire women across the African continent to look beyond the biases they face and pursue their dreams and coming on the heels of the International Women’s Day theme, “Break the Bias,” the hybrid event had over 2,500 participants joining from various countries on the continent in person and via virtual platforms.
The Managing Director of Acess Bank, Olumide Olatunji, said his outfit under the ‘W’ Initiative had channelled over GH¢70 million in loans to women owned businesses and will continue to provide both financial and non-financial support to women.
He said access to income and assets were critical aspects of women’s economic empowerment highlighting interventions by the bank in support of women.
“Since its inception, the W community has supported over 400,000 women through a range of empowerment offerings such as training on financial literacy, access to markets and mentorship programmes,” Mr Olatunji said.
“Our W initiative also supports upcoming entrepreneurs who have viable ideas with grants and technical support to birth their businesses. The W Community is designed to bring together women around the world, allowing them to connect with each other and share experiences through forum discussions, informative articles, capacity building and networking events, to inspire, connect and empower women,” he said.
Delivering the keynote address, Ibukun Awosika, founder and Chief Executive Officer of The Chair Centre Group, motivated participants to champion their personal branding and break their inherent biases instead of focusing on the societal stereotypes.
“Women need to be more strategic by focusing their energies on the strengths and the value they can bring to the table.” She advised women to be confident in their vision and talents and consistently enhance their skills. “You need to have a circle of believers around you. Those who will spur you on to achieve your dreams,” Ibukun added.
Other reputable women that graced the occasion included Joyce BawaMogtari, Joana Bannerman, Pearl Nkrumah, Beryl Agyekum, MiisheAddy, Irene Ochem, Justina Mutale and Roselyn Ngissah who all took turns to share their professional and personal journeys. KokuiSelormey-Hanson and Claudia Lumor moderated the exciting panel discussions and conversations.
The ‘W’ Initiative is the home of everything Access Bank has to offer women and is targeted at inspiring, connecting and empowering women with a focus on three segments including women professionals, women in business and women and family.
BY KINGSLEY ASARE