On this week's episode, I chat with award winning entrepreneur Chidinma Emodi Chukwuemeka, Co-Founder of The Footwear Academy in Nigeria. Chidinma was named Network Start-Up Woman of the Year 2019 and received the Star of Business & Entrepreneurship Award at the YALI West Africa Nigeria Cohort 4. She is currently a YALI RLC Entrepreneurship Mentor and a pioneer member of the administrators of The Young Enterprising Women in Africa network (YEWA), a nonprofit group geared towards empowering and enabling women entrepreneurs in Africa.
She learnt shoemaking at Accademia Riaci, Florence, Italy and has since used her work at The Footwear Academy to improve the lives of shoemakers in Aba and Lagos state, Nigeria by enabling them produce export standard footwear products through training, job matching opportunities and access to quality/affordable raw materials. She is pioneering a mastering footwear project that will train 100 young people in Aba, Abia State and 30 youths in Ihiala LGA, Anambra State.
The Footwear Academy are the recent winners of the Proudly Made in Aba Hackathon - winning a grant prize of $50,000 from Ford Foundation. They also took 2nd place in 2017 at the Open Mic Africa startup Pitch competition organized by Techpreneur Africa and MIT Legatum. They are proud winners of the March 8th Initiative by Friends of Prof, winning a NGN 1 million grant.
Chidinma's African Business Story is dedicated to the creation fo jobs and the empowerment of women and youth.
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