African women power network


The AWP Network Initiative has unveiled Patience Salifu of CondimentPlus, Ogola Lois Kange of Smiley’z Mobile Kitchen, Olufunmilola Shelika of Gef’s Smoked Edibles, Ebun Feludu of JAM – The Coconut Food Company, Chigozie Bashua of The Nutplace Ventures, Patrick Karunwi of Kalos Agro Homes, Boma Whyte of Kringle Cookies, and Chidimma Uzoma-Mba of Zayith Yogurt as selected vendors to supply ShopRite Nigeria.

The competitive AWP Network Vendor programme, which launced last year on July 15, 2020, received over 2,500 vendor applications. Only 100 vendors were accepted into the programme, while 61 vendors were certified to complete the programme and received the opportunity to pitch their products to ShopRite Nigeria. The programme in collaboration with ShopRite provides a real life opportunity for women entrepreneurs in Nigeria to get their products out into the marketplace.

The AWP Network Vendor programme will continue to work with small business owners who are interested in operating as suppliers, by working to recruit additional retailers as partners. The AWP Network also plans to invest more in food manufacturing and innovative programs.

Mary Olushoga, Founder of the AWP Network states, “Clearly, we see that this is a competitive program however, we need to do more to improve and increase a healthy food supply chain pipeline. Congratulations to the vendors accepted and approved to supply to ShopRite.”

In addition to pitching to ShopRite Nigeria’s Head of Procurement, Dawid Moelich; program participants also got the opportunity to pitch to Shimite Bello, Executive Assistant on Export Initiatives and Coordinator at the Delta State Government Unido Center, and Adaorie Udechukwu, Gender Specialist at the IFC.

The AWP Network vendor programme aims to increase the number of women entrepreneurs who supply to large retailers in a strategic manner. The AWP network Vendor program is a capacity building program for local vendors seeking professional guidance regarding best practices and guidelines to become vendor suppliers.

To date, the programme has hosted several expert speakers to include Habeeb Gbenle, Investment Association at Lofty Inc. Capital Management, Ini Abimbola, founder of ThistlePraxis Consulting Limited, Funkola Odeleye, co-founder of DIY Law Nigeria, Jessica Pinard, Raw Materials Specialist, Chinedu Enekwe, founder of Aux21 Capital, Annabel Kamuche, Managing Director at Nicert Limited, Jessica Hope, founder of Wimbart PR, Jola Ayeye, Screenwriter and Producer, Tobi Oreoluwa, Founder and Creative Director of Alaga Collections, Lisa Ebere, Founder of The Digitalist, Stephanie Anyamele, Managing Director of Charles Ardor & Co, Oluwatosin Olaseinde, Co-founder of Money Africa, Dr. Stella Ejiofoh-Alli, Organic Farmer and Gbemisola Oni, Performance Coach.

Itoro Eze-Anaba, Founder of the Mirabel Rape Crisis Center was honoured at the AWP Network ‘Get Connected’ Forum for her dedication, service and commitment to women and girls empowerment in Nigeria. Founded in 2013, the Mirabel Centre is a sexual assault referral centre established to provide free holistic, high quality medical and psychosocial services to survivors of sexual assault and rape. The centre is managed by Partnership for Justice and is located at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital.

Mary Olushoga, Founder of the AWP Network states, “In 2015, Itoro Eze-Anaba was listed as a ‘AWP Network Power Woman’ for her work. That same year, her organisation was recognised by the AWP Network as one of 14 leading organisations changing the lives of Nigerian women and girls. I am indeed honoured to have established a platform that recognises African women and girls serving their local communities. My team and I were very excited to put this Forum together, as such conversations are needed in a society that does not fully recognise sexual assault, harassment, and violence as crimes against humanity.”

Olushoga continues, “We are glad to establish a platform that allows us to hear directly from those doing the ground work. Those who do this work are usually not recognised. These organisations struggle with everything from funding to staff recruitment. We hope that we can continue to shed light on their work so that the government, private organisations and volunteers can continue to support their efforts. It is a wonderful opportunity for me to provide a platform for leaders, for women, doing amazing work in their various communities, and especially to Itoro, thank you for all that you do and for inspiring the next generation of African women and girls.”

Eze-Anaba stated as she received her award, “Thank you to the AWP Network for honouring me with this award. It is really a pleasant surprise. Thank you to AWP Network founder, Mary Olushoga for the opportunity to speak about my work, my passion and commitment providing hope to survivors of rape and sexual violence. Also, thank you to my staff for all of the work that they do.”

On this day, the AWP Network hosted a panel on Sexual Harassment and Assault in the Workplace,’ it was at this event that Eze-Anaba received her award. Speaking on the panel were the following stakeholders, Jolaoluwa Ayeye, Representative of the Stand To End Rape Initiative, Iheoma Obibi – Ashoka Fellow, Feminist and Founder of Intimate Pleasures, Nigeria’s first online adult novelty shop, Blessing Timidi Digha-Omolere – Women Deliver Young Leader, Feminist, and girl-child/sexual reproductive health and rights advocate, who came all the way from Ondo state to Lagos for the event. This event took place at the JobMag Center in Yaba, Lagos.