Coca-Cola Increases Focus on Women's Empowerment in North America
Mar 2, 2015
New programs from The Coca-Cola Company and The Coca-Cola Foundation equip women with business skills, including 5by20 initiatives with a focus on entrepreneurs in the value chain.
Women worldwide face shared barriers to success in the marketplace and benefit from programs advancing financial literacy, job training, entrepreneurship development and economic self-sufficiency, proving the fundamentals of women’s economic empowerment are universal.
However, the scope and execution of these programs vary widely based on geography. No one knows this better than The Coca-Cola Company. Empowering women to thrive is both a worldwide commitment for the company and one of the three global priorities for The Coca-Cola Foundation.
In fact, Coca-Cola has established women’s economic empowerment programs in more than 44 countries through 2013 as part of their 5by20 initiative to enable the economic empowerment of 5 million women entrepreneurs by 2020. The initiative, which began in 2010, has already enabled more than 550,000 women globally.
With each country expansion for 5by20, Coca-Cola is proving that growing programs is not a one-size-fits-all approach. In order to increase 5by20’s presence and relevance, the company focuses on innovative partnerships and customizing their approach with communities to address social and economic barriers to growth in both developing and developed nations.
With a vast majority of programs in developing countries to date, the company expanded their programs available in the United States in December 2014. More than $2 million in grants from The Coca-Cola Foundation were directed to organizations in North America focused on women’s empowerment, entrepreneurship and other programs uniquely impacting women. The company provided further support by contributing more than $1 million towards women’s programs with a focus on those impacting women of color.
The Adelante Movement, founded by Nely Galan and Coca-Cola in 2011, is one such U.S. organization to benefit from the increased Foundation and company support. With a mission to unite and economically empower Latinas, The Adelante Movement was officially integrated with the Company’s 5by20 initiative in 2014. Adelante will be a catalyst in achieving the company’s 5by20 goals in a developed market – focusing on Latinas, an emerging economic market in the U.S.
Other U.S. organizations The Coca-Cola Foundation and company support include:
-The Center for Black Women’s Wellness, located in Coke's hometown of Atlanta, Ga., along with the Hispanic Women’s Corporation’s Professional Development and Leadership Institute, have received grants to teach entrepreneurial skills, financial literacy and economic independence.
-The Coca-Cola Company and The Coca-Cola Foundation invested in a $1 million partnership with the National Urban League, SER – Jobs for Progress National, Inc. and Rainbow/PUSH Coalition, resulting in a relationship that will provide financial, business and job skills to women in ten U.S. markets.
-The Coca-Cola Company has also given financial support for women’s empowerment initiatives to Girls Inc., National Coalition on Black Civic Participation, Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship, National Association of Black Elected Legislative Women, League of United Latin American Women’s Conference, Latin American Association, and Mexican-American Opportunity Foundation Women’s Forum.
Through aligned priorities with The Coca-Cola Foundation and continued partnership across the Golden Triangle of business, government and civil society, The Coca-Cola Company is able to foster innovation while laying the groundwork to scale and replicate the most effective programs globally.
With each country expansion, the company continues to prove that the fundamentals of the programs helping a Ugandan neighborhood, a sewing school giving tailoring skills to women in India, or women in the United States explore financial literacy are universal. However, the programs helping these women succeed as pillars in their communities, creating a tremendous economic impact are unique, just like they are.