Faranani Rural Women Training Initiative
BSSA has offered business skills training courses to hundreds of women as part of PwC’s ongoing Faranani Rural Women Training Initiative. This initiative was launched by PwC in 2006 as the company's contribution to developing entrepreneurship among women. The programme aims to nurture women with drive and desire to become business owners by providing them with the necessary know-how to get started.
Participants often come from very remote rural areas to attend the Faranani training, and since the launch of the programme training sessions have taken place in Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Gauteng, the Free State and KwaZulu-Natal.
So far in 2016, training has been provided to 20 women in Pietermaritzburg in KwaZulu-Natal, and 23 women in Mthatha in the Eastern Cape. It was the first time the programme was offered in the Eastern Cape. The learners were all from the forestry sector and most own and run small-scale sawmills in the vicinity of Mthatha. The training offered by BSSA focused on the poor skills base in the small sawmill industry - it included basic business skills training, ending with participants each drawing up their own business plan.
IBA programme for training and mentoring of SMMEs
The Institute of Business Advisers (IBA) has, in conjunction with the Tshwane Metro, since the start of 2012 been running an ongoing programme of training and mentoring SMMEs in Tshwane. Business advisers accredited by the IBA submit the names of entrepreneurs with specific problems, and training is held to address these issues, followed by mentorship.
Groups from various industries have approached the IBA to assist them in growing their businesses. BSSA was contracted to offer these groups training on costing and pricing, marketing, customer care, effective financial management, and business plans, followed by group mentorship.
The dti network facilitators
The Black Business Supplier Development Programme (BBSDP) of the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) was introduced in 2002 to address the constraints that many black-owned small enterprises faced in participating in the mainstream economy. The BBSDP provides a matching grant to enterprises to assist them in improving their competitiveness through for example upgrading managerial capabilities, market development and quality improvement projects. Independent so-called "network facilitators" assist small enterprises to access the BBSDP matching grants.
BSSA has been contracted to improve the competencies of some of the network facilitators to assist more small entrepreneurs to benefit from the BBSDP programme. The next phase of the training programme is being rolled out during 2013.