Pakistan is a vividly male dominated society and the notion of women entrepreneurs is a rather alien concept to many. But slowly and gradually the thought process of the society is evolving and that is giving a genuine rise to women empowerment. Women entrepreneurship is considered to have a very significant role in enabling women emancipation and empowerment.
The economic situation of the country Pakistan is rather problematic, so right now there is a calamitous need to empower women not only economically but socially as well and to provide them with far better employment opportunities and sources of income to aid them in prospering and providing support to their families.
To assist the daughters of Pakistan to become entrepreneurs requires immense support. They need access to credit funds, training, product design, developments, and strategic occupational development.
Women in Pakistan are slowly coming out of their comfort zones and striving for something greater and something which is far greater than any generation of woman have experienced. They are working their way up from low productivity sectors and becoming in charge of their own lives. Women are making vigorous efforts by putting their abilities to the test and pushing themselves forwards and towards success.
Women do tend to ace much more difficulties than their male counterparts but most of them do not shy away from the challenge. Digital media services, gaming industry, social enterprising, hospital management, marketing and communication, textile and apparel are just some of the countless industries that the Pakistani women of caliber have explored.
“Aerodynamically the bumblebee shouldn’t be able to fly, but the bumblebee doesn’t know that so it goes on flying anyway.”
Mary Kate (Founder of Mary Kate cosmetics).
One of the most famous women entrepreneurs from Pakistan is Jehan Ara. She is the president and the ideologist behind Pasha (Pakistan Software Houses Association). The company is a provider of software products and services and focuses on IT. She is an entrepreneur, a motivational speaker and writer. She is quite well known in the business circle and has been rather popular for almost 29 years.
Official statistics and studies depict that the contribution of Pakistani women in the labour force is a mere 25% in contrast to the 80% of men employed. The involvement of women in the service industry is about 12% and 74% in the agriculture sector which is much greater than their male counterparts. Studies prove that that these gender gaps in the work sector prevail due to at risk employment and the bizarre discrimination of gender in the labour force outcomes in the loss of income and output.
Roshaneh Zafar is another Pakistani name that comes to mind when we talk about self-motivated women entrepreneurs. She is the organizer of the Kashaf Foundation. The institute strives to better the economic state of women in the rural areas and to provide them with an education. She completed her education from the prestigious Yale University and then she left her job at the World Bank to create the Kashaf Foundation. She is one of the many inspiring women who are working to make the standard of life of women in Pakistan much better.
“Next time, ask: what’s the worst that will happen? Then push yourself a little further than you dare. Once you start to speak, people will yell at you. They will interrupt you, put you down and suggest it’s personal. And the world won’t end … And the speaking will get easier and easier. And you will find you have fallen in love with your own vision, which you may never have realized you had. And you will lose some friends and lovers, and realize you don’t miss them. And new ones will find you and cherish you … And at last you’ll know with surpassing certainty that only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth. And that is not speaking.” Audre Lorde.
As long as women continue to battle through the daily challenges, there is always a light at the end of the tunnel, hope.