With local women as entrepreneurs, owners and operators, a restaurant serving traditional Ethiopian food has become a major success in Bahir dar – one of Ethiopia’s main tourist destinations. The restaurant now employs 75 women. PfC has provided financial support to establish the business.
The local branch of the Women’s Health Association of Ethiopia (WHAE) in Bahir dar has worked for a long time on developing a business concept that could provide members and the association with income-generating work. They began with a simple cafe that was frequented by locals. Through this work they developed expertise in running a hospitality business, and they soon set their sights higher: They could run a bigger operation. They could open a restaurant!
To turn the idea into reality would require a financial investment, and Partnership for Change signed an agreement with WHAE to provide start-up support for a new restaurant with the goal of attracting not only locals but also tourists. With funding from the Norwegian foundation “Et rikere liv” (A richer life) PfC could contribute to upgrading the building the women already owned. The building was renovated and is now equipped with a kitchen and the necessary equipment.
The restaurant has quickly become popular – both locals and tourists flock to enjoy traditional Ethiopian food based on “injera”, a sourdough flatbread. Those who wish can also join in preparing the food. The restaurant earns a good income and employs 75 women who have become financially independent through the project. Thirty per cent of profits are set aside and will be used to establish new women’s groups and women’s jobs in the area.
By 2017, the operation of the restaurant is sustainable, and in consultation with the drivers, PfC has withdrawn. They run the restaurant on their own, with great success.