According to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, there are 126 million women operating new businesses and another 98 million at the helm of established ones this millennium. Ever before now, in the earlier centuries, it had been unusual for women and girls to work alongside husbands and brothers in the family business, they were to be seen and never heard.


Globally, no country has fully attained gender equality. In some places, women still lack rights to own lands or to inherit property, obtain access to a credit facility or even earn a living. To date, girls still make up a higher percentage of out-of-school children than boys. Approximately one-quarter of girls in the developing world do not attend school while an educated girl is more likely to postpone marriage, raise a smaller family, have healthier children, and send her own children to school.


Guaranteeing the rights of females and giving them opportunities to reach their full potential is critical not only for attaining gender equality but also for meeting a wide range of international development goals. Empowered women and girls contribute to the health and productivity of their families, communities, and countries adding to her sense of self-worth, her decision-making power, her access to opportunities and resources, her power and control over her own life inside and outside the home, and her ability to effect change.


For most well-grounded self-worth of women to in the society propelled late Prof. Jadesola Akande establish Iyalode Wuraola Esan Foundation (IWEF) on March 2006 in memory of her late mother, Iyalode Wuraola Esan, the first female Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. She was the first educated Iyalode of Ibadan land in Oyo State and the proprietress of the first privately owned girls’ secondary school in Ibadan and she, throughout her lifetime fought for the good and advancement of female gender in the society.


Envisioned to change societal attitude which perceived successful female in public as exception and aberrations, the foundation ensured to catch girls young by empowering them through education, sensitization and skills acquisition, boosting their self-confidence to seek and actualize their potentials to the fullest, training students (mainly out of school girls and ladies from poor background) and making English Language, Computer studies, health education and small scale business studies compulsory for them. Various skills such as fashion designing, hairdressing, make -up, catering, decoration, arts, photography and video coverage, beads stringing, tie and die, petroleum jelly, nylon production, and hat-making are some of the numerous skills to be learned.


Aside from the skills acquisition for young ladies, housewives are constantly trained on gene maintenance, small scale business studies, health education, tie and dye, beads stringing, soap making, drinks making, decoration and petroleum jelly production.

IWEF has proudly trained 176 females since its inception. While the yearly training has seen participants receiving lectures on the importance of saving and the need to open an individual account.


The coordinator of IWEF said that constant follow up on graduates and training them on the best way to maintain and sustain their businesses is one huge goal the foundation has been able to achieve. Stating further that a woman is human and that girls must risk everything for freedom, equality and passion, a passion that would transform to a desire to make her life into poetry, that would become distinct, beautiful and meaningful, which would create a life as beautiful as the dreams that dance in her imagination which will, in turn, transform the society around her.


Speaking on if NGOs can completely be independent of the government IWEF’s coordinator said that it is very possible in as much as advocacies are pushed successfully and both parties ensure to work hand in hand to achieve their common goals.