BENIN CITY- EDO, NIGERIA. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Pathfinders has pivoted and innovated on ways to provide support to our beneficiaries surviving through the pandemic’s unrelenting implications, i.e., recession, economic hardship and inflation, as well as the emotional toll it has taken. One of our innovations has been conducting Adaptive Business Trainings, which allow us to train our beneficiaries on how to pivot their business models to adapt to changes in consumer choices and consumption. These trainings, which are conducted by some of our survivor advocates and/or Pathfinders alumni and as part of PJI’s The Freedom Project, are intended to provide some flexibility so that beneficiaries who are starting or endeavoring to maintain their businesses amidst the pandemic can generate alternative sources of income to supplement their primary businesses.
To this end, on March 17, 2022, an Adaptive Business Training was organized and conducted for 35 beneficiaries. During the training, program beneficiaries were afforded an opportunity to hear from a successful entrepreneur who was once at -risk to becoming trafficked herself, on how she started, struggled through and grew her African hair braiding business. Miss Jennifer Onoma, founder and CEO of Jenny’s Hair Beauty Parlour, also shared tips and recommendations which were well received. Thereafter, beneficiaries were trained by seasoned entrepreneurs on their choice of two of five high-demand businesses, including Ankara crafts, hibiscus flower juice (Zobo), coconut candy, liquid dish washing soap, as well as natural hair shampoo and conditioner. They also received a brief training by one of our counselors on the importance of mental health and self care while going about their businesses.
Following the successful training, each beneficiary received a starter pack containing all the necessary materials to practice the skills they learned so that they could perfect them and ultimately add that product as a source of additional income. Lunch and a transportation stipend was also provided for each beneficiary.
We are grateful to the United States Department of State which is making The Freedom Project possible. Thank you!
The opinions, findings and conclusions stated herein are those of Pathfinders Justice Initiative and do not necessarily reflect those of the United States Department of State.