SIDS: ITC head meets Samoan women entrepreneurs

1 September 2014
ITC News

The International Trade Centre's Executive Director Arancha González visited the Women in Business Development (WIBDI) organisation in Apia, Samoa, on 30 August to exchange ideas on women's economic empowerment during her official visit to the Pacific island state to attend the 3rd United Nations Conference on Small Island Developing States (SIDS).

WIBDI an organisation dedicated to strengthening village economies in Samoa in ways that honour indigenous tradition, use traditional and modern technology, and promote fair trade. It aims to empower and equip rural families to cultivate sustainable businesses which maximize farm-based resources.

During the visit to WIBDI, Ms. González was introduced to the process of extracting virgin cocoa oil, which is providing a vital source of income for many Samoan families across the 183 Samoan villages in which the organization works.

WIBDI has also invested in dehydrating equipment, which allows it to produce banana crisps for exports.

Empowered to participate in a cash economy, the families that are part of WIBDI’s network are able to send children to school, pay utility bills and have control over their lives instead of relying on remittances.