Welcome to the United Nations

Western Equatoria communities empowered to build businesses and sustain their families during UNMISS-funded vocational training

Forty people from Western Equatoria graduated from an UNMISS-funded training programme with new skills in cosmetics production and beekeeping that will help them build businesses and sustain their families during South Sudan’s economic crisis. Photos by Felix Francis Katie/UNMISS.

At a time when communities across South Sudan are suffering from a rapidly deteriorating economic situation, assistance to enhance their business skills and improve opportunities to sustain their families is more important than ever.In response, the United Nations Mission in South Sudan has been funding training activities across the Western Equatorian State to help alleviate poverty and boost economic development, including empowering more than 200 people with new vocational skills. In Sakure Payam in Nzara County, 30 women and 10 men have graduated from a six-month long UNMISS-funded programme to train them in the production of cosmetics as well as beekeeping. This training project was first initiated by the mission four years ago and is popular with the community..“This activity has changed our mindset and will empower us to rely on ourselves. Now we can make our own soap, body lotion, and hair shampoo for our families as well as to take it to the market,” said graduate Sylvia Sarah Alex.Several trainees have significantly advanced their businesses after completing the programme, said Yabang Emelia Moses, the Executive Director of the Anika Women Association, a community-based organization in Yambio which conducted the training. "We have successfully trained 220 participants who are making significant progress as a result," she said. The State Minister of Cooperatives and Rural Development, Yoana Robert Mark, presided over the graduation ceremony and noted the importance of the training for female participants particularly.“Working women in society are valuable assets that contribute to community development.”UNMISS representative, Tahiru Ibrahim, expressed the mission’s ongoing commitment to supporting government efforts to build the capacity of communities across the country to be self-sustaining and to foster peace and development.