Ruby is the CEO and Co-Founder of WUKA Wear. She is a passionate environmental scientist who combines her scientific knowledge and passion for lean startup methodology to solve the problems that surround disposable menstrual products. She was born and brought up in Nepal and with WUKA , she wants to break taboos around period worldwide.

This week on Change Making Women we talk to Ruby, who is originally from Nepal about how she developed the idea for Wuka Wear Period Pants and went about testing, developing and launching the product.

Listen to the show to hear more about the process of envisioning an innovative product, the environmental imperative for us to get into the habit of using reusable menstrual products, breaking down the stigma and taboos about our bleeding and the importance of addressing period poverty worldwide.

Find out more about Wuka Wear (& get yourself a pair of period pants!)

Twitter: @WukaWear
Facebook: @WukaWear
Instagram: @WukaWear

This week Ziada and Mary Ann talk with Wambui JL the creator of Hairpolitian Lifestyle, an online magazine that focuses on African women who have or want to return to their natural hair.

We talk following your gut as a way to do business, almost giving up (but not quite), sharing your struggles to inspire others (and also get support) and the way that creative ideas emerge at 3 in the morning (we don’t know why!).

 

Wambui JL is a natural lifestyle and creative entrepreneur based in Nairobi, Kenya. Wambui also has a passion for women in business and she moderates panels for events that seek to uplift women in that space. She’s a Graphic Designer by profession and over the years has used her expertise to give brand consultations to individuals and companies alike.

Photo of Wambui by Photos by Jeri 

Get in touch with Wambui JL and Read Hairpolitan

Wambui JL
Facebook: WambuiJL
Instagram: WambuiJL
Hairpolitan
Facebook:Hairpolitan
Instagram:Hairpolitan
Twitter: Hairpolitan

In this episode, Mary Ann talks to Jo Casey about how she supports people to run meaningful businesses that reflect their values and make a difference in the world. We talk radical approaches, challenging accepted wisdom and re-making our work in a way that feels true for us.

Jo Casey is a certified coach, speaker, trainer and podcaster. In addition to being British, slightly nerdy and allergic to the marketing bullsh*t in the personal development industry, she’s certain that succeeding as female entrepreneurs means violating every single message that’s been poured into us about what it means to be a ‘good’ woman (Don’t take up space….be compliant….defer to others….don’t be pushy/bossy/too confident etc.etc.)

In other words, we have to violate our feminine conditioning – which is tricksy, sometimes hard but transformational.

Jo specialises in helping service based business owners do that self-development and unlearning work, get more clients and build sustainable, meaningful businesses without resorting to the dark arts or sleazy marketing tactics.

Founder of jocasey.com and The Meaningful Business Academy, creator and presenter of The Meaningful Business Podcast, speaker, and writer for Coaching Blueprint, Mind Body Green and Tiny Buddha (among others).

Jo integrates business strategy, marketing, and aligned sales with self-development, growth, and personal actualisation. So building a business will feel deep and transformational – as well as be profitable.

Connect with Jo and her work:

Website: www.jocasey.com

The Meaningful Business Academy: www.meaningfulbizacademy.com

Instagram: @jocaseyb
Facebook: @jocaseyb

In this episode Mary Ann and Ziada talk with Eunice Baguma Ball founder of Africa Technology Business Network about her work creating an event for aspiring and upcoming African tech innovators in London after being in the city for only a few months and about taking the world back to the continent she comes from with Her Future Africa which offers African women entrepreneurs the support and inspiration they need to start and technology-based businesses.

Eunice is a social entrepreneur and advocate for women in tech technology. She is Founder & Director of Africa Technology Business Network (ATBN).  Previously the founder of an Africa-based tech startup, she is now based in London working to enable collaboration between the UK and African startup communities. Eunice is particularly passionate about empowering female entrepreneurs and launched #HerFutureAfrica, a pan-African, female-focused tech entrepreneurship accelerator. She is also currently working on a book, Founding Women which spotlights leading African female tech role models to inspire and break down barriers for young African women in tech.

Connect with and find out more about Eunice and her work

ATBN: http://www.africatbn.com/

Her Future Africa: http://www.herfutureafrica.org/

Eunice on Twitter: @eb_ball

This week Ziada and Mary Ann talk to Emily Waithira Founder of Awali Shea Butter, a business exporting natural organic shea butter harvested in Uganda to Kenya and beyond. She tells us about the challenges of starting up, the importance of having a Team alongside her and why we shouldn’t let fear of failure jeopardise our dreams.

Emily Waithira is the Founder and Managing Director of Awali Shea Butter a company supplying 100% original, pure, organic, raw, unrefined Shea butter from Northern Uganda which is popularly known as Nilotica Shea butter. “Awali” means original in Kiswahili language.
Emily has a background in Finance and Business Administration and holds an MBA in Strategic Management. Together with her sister the two registered Awali Shea Butter in Kenya in February 2016 and the business became fully operational in January 2017. They dedicated the interim period towards product research and setting up business structures and systems. Awali regional sales and distribution point is located in Nairobi, Kenya with its production unit in Kampala, Uganda close to where the Shea nuts are collected.
Awali Shea Butter is driven by its vision “To be a leading player in the natural care industry in East and Sub-Sahara Africa”. Awali‘s unique selling point is its promise of quality and high standards in the Shea industry which will ultimately contribute to sustainability in the Shea value chain. We have set up the right structures to ensure we can meet this. We sell our Shea butter on both retail and wholesale basis.

Awali will achieve its vision by proving our customers with premium quality unrefined Shea butter that treats and cleanses your skin and hair at a fair price. We want the market to be aware and benefit from this amazing product that we and our families have proudly enjoyed.

Connect with and find out more about Emily and Awali She Butter

Facebook: Awali Shea Butter

Instagram: @awali_shea_butter

Contact Awali Shea Butter via quality@awalishea.com and  +254 721 138 953/ +254 718 008 214

This week on Change Making Women we talk to Majo (Marjorie Angella Athurra) of the Gejja Women’s Foundation in Mpigi in Central Uganda. We hear about her own story, her work with women in her own community and how she is working to end shame and secrecy around menstruation.

Majo’s story in her own words:

I was born to two school going teenagers on 16th August 1992. My father was 16 and my mother was 14. I was abandoned shortly after birth. That led me to grow without parents and that parental gap meant I lacked childhood love, guidance and care that every child enjoys as they are growing. That significantly affected my self-esteem and as a result, I hated myself since I was regarded a bastard, useless and a child without any future. At the age of 14, I started my mensuration periods and my guardian at that time suggested I get married since there were no finances to help take care of the basic safe, hygienic and healthy menstruation materials. That gave another picture that they actually wanted to send me early marriage not only to stop being a burden, but also with the hope that through me, they could get some income. However, I managed to continue with school but was staying with whoever offered to house me and finance my education until 2011, when I got a government sponsorship to join Kyambogo University and pursue a diploma in English and Literature. Later in 2014, I joined the Social Innovation Academy where I was mentored and developed Gejja women foundation, an organisation through which I am fulfilling my passion of helping the young girls and women who are in the rural areas and marginalised. This initiative also empowers the widows who have no ability to sustain their livelihoods or educate their children.

Connect with Majo and find out more about her work:

This week on Change Making Women we talk to Kelly Diels, a writer and marketing consultant whose approach is based upon the marketing strategies of movements and revolutionaries. We find out why she is so passionate about the Feminist Marketing School she recently launched, what it means to market as a feminist without selling out, how she defined and critiques the Female Empowerment Lifestyle Brand and how she thinks we can both market our work and stay true to our values.

Kelly is a writer and marketing consultant and her approach is based upon the marketing strategies of movements and revolutionaries (if you’ve worked with her you’ll be able to testify). Her chief inspirations for how to get visible and get sh*t done are the Dr. Reverend Martin Luther King Jr – the man was a master strategist – and the black lesbian feminist poet Audre Lorde. She is a published writer and social critic; She has a BA with honours in Poli Sci; She has five children; every Sunday she writes blazing epistles of righteousness; and she is a rampant feminist. Her feminism and her work are about justice.

Love + Justice. Always and for all of us.

Connect with Kelly and find out more about her work:

Feminist Marketing School: http://bit.ly/feministmarketingschool
Website: www.kellydiels.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kellydielswriter
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kelly.diels
Sunday Love Letter (subscribe): http://www.kellydiels.com/subscribe
We Are The Culture Makers (FB Group): http://bit.ly/wearetheculturemakers

This week we talk to Tanya Geisler, a coach and self-confessed ‘reluctant expert’ in the Imposter Complex about why you shouldn’t let your own self-doubt stop you from making the difference you are passionate about making in the world. We talk some common signs of the Imposter Complex, why if you feel it you definitely aren’t a fraud and concrete strategies for moving through your fears and getting on with the work you long to do.

Tanya Geisler is certified Life and Business Coach (CPCC), TEDxWomen speaker, and writer – she teaches women how to step into their starring roles, own their authority, and overcome the Impostor Complex in their life, in their work, and in their life’s work.

Connect with and find out more about Tanya and her work:

Website: http://tanyageisler.com/

Facebook: Tanya Geisler Coaching

Twitter: @TanyaGeisler

Instagram: @tanyageisler

You can listen to this episode below or find it on ITunes, Stitcher or SoundCloud.

TOPICS WE DISCUSS IN THIS EPISODE

In this episode we talk to Maria Magembe and Hellen Lawuo-Meena about the business they have recently launched Daughters of the Soil. We talk about

  • How Maria’s Grandmother Oyangi inspired their 100% natural range of premium beauty products
  • Why they have chosen to create a global brand that celebrates African heritage
  • What they have learnt from working together and how they manage doing business with a friend
  • How Daughters of the Soil wants to develop a platform that supports rural women in Africa to empower themselves

Some quotes from the show:
We want to be a brand that celebrates the goodness that comes from the soil across Africa’

‘Where we come from the soil is regarded as something important, we believe that we are from the soil and so it’s a fitting name for a natural beauty business’

‘We are still learning everyday, we are just stretching ourselves’

‘It’s really been a journey in terms of solving problems, it’s really exciting’

‘Even when we don’t agree, it’s a really good learning point’

‘It’s about developing a platform that supports rural women in Africa who don’t have some of the support that we have been really privileged to have’

‘It’s about women backing women in business’

Connect with and find out more about Daughters of the Soil:

www.daughterofthesoil.co.uk
Twitter:@daughterof_soil

Instagram: @daughetrof_soil

Facebook: Daughterofthesoil

Ziada tells Mary Ann all about the upcoming Nywele Natural & Beauty Expo which Kipilipili are part of organising in Dar es Salaam. We find out what visitors can expect at the show and why the organisers have chosen to focus on natural products made as locally as possible as well as offering women a chance to learn from exhibitors and experts about the natural hair and beauty challenges they face!