Atma Connect, a leader in empowering locally-led change, has begun work to empower women entrepreneurs in the city and regency of Serang in Indonesia.
The work kicked off with a “Training of Trainers” program in October 2023 for six female mentors of small businesses in the city and regency of Serang in the Banten province. The mentors will support 240 female small business owners in 12 small business groups, and the ambitious program is part of the 24-month Digital Transformation for the Development of Women’s Small Businesses in Banten Province initiative, supported by the Internet Society Foundation. (For more about the initiative, see Atma’s press release.)
“We are not just training participants, we are helping them to turn learning into action,” said Alfan Kasdar, Atma’s field director. “Our main goal is to help them implement opportunities to expand their businesses, increase sales, and maintain more structured financial records.”
Serang was selected as a location due to its low level of digital literacy, despite being only about 80 kilometers from the national capital of Jakarta.
During three days of training, prospective business mentors received guidance from experienced mentors Dany Ariyanto and Mirwan Adipura, each of whom has over a decade of experience in mentoring owners of thousands of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) throughout Indonesia.
“The Training of Trainers is the initial step in empowering field mentors,” said Adipura. “Mentors gained the knowledge and skills to support female entrepreneurs at the local level.” The training covered key topics including business management, digital marketing, business skills, and entrepreneurship, as well as finance and accounting.
Eka Elviani, one of the participants and field mentors, said, “I hope to apply the knowledge I gain in this training to transform owners from people who haven’t used digital marketing practices into proficient users who can boost their sales and maintain structured financial records.” The communities the mentors will work with include groups of mothers who are also housewives, farmers, and farm laborers.