Nestlé Pakistan and Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) have collaborated to launch an initiative in support of rural development and women empowerment. This program is called the “Rural Sales Program” and is part of the “Rural Livelihood Program.”
The Rural Sales program has allowed women who are living below the poverty line and are counted among the “poorest of the poor” to become Nestlé Pakistan Rural Sales Agents.
To date, this program has enrolled more than 250 BISP beneficiaries as Nestlé Pakistan Rural Sales Agents. Hailing from 12 districts across Sindh and Punjab, we can find many success stories such as that of Sajida Bibi of Renala, Punjab. Forced to take her children out of school due to poverty, Sajida Bibi has been able to re-enroll all 6 of her children back into school.
And not only does the program provide rigorous sales training, the women are also given nutrition awareness sessions through Nestlé Healthy Women program, that have been tailored especially for rural women.
These sessions include topics covering the importance of nutrition, ideas on how to cook healthy nutritious meals within a budget and disseminating key nutrition and hygiene messages to the beneficiaries.
With this information the women are able to make healthier choices for their families and themselves. By 2021, the Rural Healthy Women aims to cover at least 10,000 beneficiaries.
Chairperson BISP commented,
“I am very proud of this partnership. BISP beneficiaries receive Rs.4, 834 every quarter, those who are part of this program are now earning up to Rs.10, 000 per month on average! I hope other corporates follow the footsteps of Nestlé Pakistan, so our beneficiaries can become a productive workforce of Pakistan”.
Applauding the joint effort of the two organizations, Mr. Bruno Olierhoek; CEO Nestlé Pakistan commented,
“The challenges the world faces today can only be addressed through cooperation collaboration. We can no longer afford to work in silos, be it the private sector, non-profit or government. Public and private partnerships are addressing key development challenges across the globe. These initiatives are also helping achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals 1 and 5; No Poverty and Gender Equality.”
World Bank Pakistan Country Director, IIlango Patchamuthu said,
“The partnership between BISP and Nestlé Pakistan is a great example of how a public private partnership can bring the bottom of the food chain and the poorest of the poor into the mainstream. These efforts need to continue if we want to help the bottom 40 percent and share prosperity with them.”
The launch event was attended by senior government officials, ambassadors and media. The launch event concluded with a recognition ceremony for BISP beneficiaries. with a recognition ceremony for BISP beneficiaries.