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SANBio empowering female owned bio-businesses

This year, International Women’s Day shared a strong call-to-action to press forward and progress gender parity under the campaign theme #PressforProgress.

There is a strong call to #PressforProgress motivating and uniting friends, colleagues and whole communities to think, act and be gender inclusive.

This has since seen organisations such as the Southern Africa Network for Biosciences (SANBio)have in place programmes that are gender inclusive. They look for ambitious female leaders in bioscience-based businesses want to grow their business through acceleration programmes, and gain regional exposure and access to international markets.

SANBio is a shared biosciences research, development and innovation platform for working collaboratively, to address some of Southern Africa’s key biosciences issues in health, nutrition and health-related intervention areas such as agriculture and environment.

With support from the BioFISA II programme, SANBio has implemented a second round of FemBioBiz Acceleration Programme, aimed at supporting women in biosciences. The Programme was created to develop leadership, technological and business skills in female-owned businesses in the SADC region.

Although sub-Saharan Africa has not been famous for its status as a leader in female inclusion within the economic sector, African women are surprisingly beating the odds and defying the obstacles in the field of entrepreneurship in the region.

Entrepreneurs characteristically have ambition, determination and a flair for original ideas. However, many lack the business expertise required to develop these into commercially viable ventures.

“This programme creates a platform for peer learning and will empower women to lead in health and nutrition through science and technology”, says Zvikomborero Tangawamira, BioFISA II programme manager.

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