Three years ago, Marina Borta started her own business. It is a shop that produces and sells handmade jewellery made from crystals and bohemian glass. She admits that it is definitely not easy to open a business in Moldova and especially to keep it running, however, it is not impossible. “The idea came from the desire to be independent – to have your own business and build it yourself” says Marina Borta. Angela Beregoi agrees with this. The entrepreneur established eight years ago a “Development Centre for Children”, which offers education and care for children, a business that requires a lot of inspiration and creativity. “If you love what you do, you will take great care of it and work wholeheartedly. The results are obvious and you are proud of what you have achieved.” says Ms. Beregoi. Both entrepreneurs have participated along with other 65 women in the workshop “Creative Female Entrepreneurship” on the occasion of the International Women’s Day in Chisinau. The main organizers of this project are the Project Office of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Southeast Europe in collaboration with the NGO Global Entrepreneurship Moldova (GEN Moldova).
Self-employed women from various industries of fashion, media, financial advisory services, food production and IT had the opportunity to share their experiences and best practices. Additional support was provided by three international experts from Spain, Romania and Ukraine. The participants presented the embodiment of the counterpoint of the traditional role perceptions that are still deeply ingrained in Moldova. To live an independent and self-determined life, in which one fulfils one’s dreams, is a concept that clashes harshly with the reality in Moldova, the poorest country in Europe, where the average wage is around 238 Euros. Especially, considering that 26 percent of the people depend on agriculture, out of which a big part lives on subsistence farming.
According to Olesea Fortuna, Chairwoman of GEN Moldova, it is difficult in this situation to take the first steps. “Therefore, we want to support entrepreneurs with the help of experts, coaches and mentors, who are active in different economic sectors, and to make entrepreneurship more fun, so that it is accessible to more women. We want women to be courageous, to have more aspirations, so that their businesses can grow on national and international levels”.
Another participant of the workshop was Rodica Cioranica, the founder of the famous Moldovan magazine “VIP Magazin”. She shared her experience and especially the moments of failure that she had gone through several times as a businesswoman.
“Failure is also part of the learning process,” explained Antonio Carlos Ruiz, Creative Economy Consultant from Spain to the participants. To manage successful businesses, what matters most is not only the creativity one needs to apply in business, but also the self-confidence that businesswomen need to have in themselves. “Women need to be in any case more courageous because they are facing challenges more often than men do. However, it is important that they think globally and are capable of being a part of a regional network such as GEN. Believe in yourselves! GEN and the Friedrich Naumann Foundation already do so.”
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