By Samson Echenim
No fewer than 84 young women have again completed Women Empowerment Programme Scheme Synergy (WEPSS) of Nigeria’s oil and gas logistics giant, INTELS Nigeria Limited in Onne, Rivers State.
Intels’ flagship corporate social responsibility (CSR) programme, WEPSS has helped to empower and set up over a thousand rural women for fashion designing and tailoring business in the last six years.
Business a.m learnt that this is the second batch of women to benefit from the programme this year. In June, 80 women benefitted from the empowerment scheme.
Established in 2013, WEPSS was set up by Intels to train Nigerian women in fashion design and tailoring. Since inception six years ago, no fewer than 1,200 women drawn from various communities across the country have graduated from the programme.
Mike Epelle, Intels’ general manager, Legal and Corporate Services said, “The fashion industry has really grown. In Nigeria, it is a big industry and you can make a living and take care of your needs in life if you apply yourself to what you have learnt and what you are going out to the society with. All you need to do is to be dedicated to your work. You can start small and sustain what you are doing.
“This is a project that is very dear to the heart of our group chairman and of course the management of Intels takes everything about the training going on here very seriously.”
Nancy Freeborn, head, WEPSS Project, charged the beneficiaries to make the company proud by putting into use the skills that they have acquired.
“It gives us a lot of joy when we go on our follow-up exercise and see people who are really putting into use the skills they have acquired. The kind of training our trainees receive here is comparable to international standards,” she said.
29 years old Maltina Thompson, who emerged best performing trainee was provided with a full start-up kit which includes an industrial sewing machine, steam iron, chair, scissors, box of tailors’ chalk and measuring tape.
Thompson expressed appreciation to the management of Intels for the kind gesture of impacting on women through the empowerment scheme even as she assured that the skills she acquired during the training would be put to good use.
Intels is a leading port operator and Nigeria’s largest oil and logistics service company, which provides comprehensive integrated logistics services for the Nigerian oil and gas industry.