National Sharing Workshop on Economic Empowerment of Women through Forest Solutions

National Sharing Workshop on Economic Empowerment of Women through Forest Solutions

  • March 26, 2024

The National Sharing Workshop on Economic Empowerment of Women through Forest Solutions held in Kathmandu, marked the culmination of a 30-month project. Throughout its journey, the initiative empowered over 240 rural marginalized women entrepreneurs, fostering their economic, social, and technological capacities through diverse training sessions and capacity-building activities. Despite facing challenges, the project persevered and successfully achieved its objectives.

The workshop aimed to:

– Facilitate Knowledge Sharing: Disseminate project insights, best practices, and lessons learned to stakeholders.

– Celebrate Achievements: Commemorate the accomplishments and contributions of entrepreneurs, stakeholders, and the project team.

– Reflect and Evaluate: Assess project outcomes, identify strengths, weaknesses, and areas for improvement.

– Disseminate Results: Share the project’s findings with a broader audience through presentations and case studies, inspiring similar initiatives.

Diverse stakeholders, including representatives from the Ministry of Forest and Soil Conservation, consortium partners like AFFON, FenFit, HIMAWANTI, as well as NGOs and INGOs, actively participated. Their engagement enriched discussions, providing valuable feedback and fostering a supportive environment.

A key topic, led by Kanchan Lama, the Principal Investigator, provided an overview of the project, highlighting objectives, study areas, and the operation of 11 different enterprise models, resulting in 18 forest-based enterprises, nine of which were officially registered. Collaboration with government and non-government entities was emphasized.

Major project interventions, including women empowerment initiatives, forest management training, exposure visits, and climate-resilient leadership training, were explained. The project’s involvement in Gender Just and Climate Financing discussions, as well as its contribution to policy formulation in international conferences, was underscored. Robust knowledge dissemination strategies were highlighted to enhance stakeholders’ understanding of the challenges and successes faced by marginalized women entrepreneurs.

The workshop concluded with a shared vision of promoting sustainable economic empowerment and resilience among women entrepreneurs in forest communities. In his closing remarks, Rahul Karki echoed a widespread perception that understanding community forests requires research or visiting Nepal. He also envisioned a future where women-owned forest-based enterprises attract global attention as exemplars of sustainable practices.