Cartier Philanthropy - Building hope for women micro-entrepreneurs in Mexico

Building hope for women micro-entrepreneurs in Mexico


In Mexico, women continue to face major challenges to entering the workforce. CREA helps women micro-entrepreneurs boost their businesses with training, mentorship and services, empowering them to improve production processes, develop distribution channels and reach larger markets and financing channels. Through its interactive business development programme delivered in four new training centres, over 7,700 women entrepreneurs acquired new management skills, built self-esteem and generated local income and employment.

Focus area
Women’s Social and Economic Development

Results achieved

Small enterprises account for the vast majority of businesses in Mexico. Despite their prevalence, however, most of these enterprises tend to remain small and have low productivity, mainly because of their lack of access to credit and entrepreneurial skills.

Against this background, women continue to face major challenges to even entering the workforce in the first place. A culture of gender inequality acts as a powerful deterrent, limiting their access to finance, skills and opportunities as well as their confidence and self-esteem.

CREA’s participatory business development programme provides women in rural, urban and semi-urban areas with management skills and entrepreneurial attitudes, building their self-esteem and ultimately helping them become successful business owners and leaders in their homes and communities.

Between 2016 and 2019, 7,760 women (1,360 more than the initial target) enrolled in CREA training centres in Hidalgo, Queretaro, Yucatan, Guerrero and Toluca. During these three years, the participant graduation rate was as high as 80%. The women acquired leadership, managerial and financial skills and expanded their access to financing channels. Their businesses achieved an estimated 82% survival rate and the preliminary results of a World Bank Impact Study showed a 10% increase in their weekly profits.