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In 2017, Crossroads’ partners Union Nationale des Femmes Coopératrices du Sénégal (UNFCS) and Papillon MDC piloted a unique mentor-mentee program to provide young women in the Diourbel region of Senegal, especially those with little education and jobless, with leadership skills that encourage them to engage with UNFCS women soap making collectives.  A key goal was to encourage an older generation of women soap producers to share their expertise and their power with the next generation. The pilot program is yielding big results like the increased involvement of young women in the union’s soap production and marketing activities.

A word from Carine Guidicelli, Crossroads International Executive Director:

The partnership with Papillon MDC has opened new avenues to increase young Senegalese women’s leadership and economic empowerment. The expertise shared by the Papillon MDC team with our local partners is encouraging older, experienced women to include young people within their business activities. As a result, production has increased benefiting both young and experienced producers alike. Young women like Daba Gaye who sold 230 soap units in a month are earning their independence.  Another participant, Yacine Diouf said after learning about leadership she was more involved in decision-making and valued within her home. Thanks to Papillon MDC team for their generous contribution to achieving a more equal and fair world for all.  

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