African Women Entrepreneurs Showcase Their Wares and Share Personal Triumphs

Event will take place today, 7/22/2015,  at the Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E Washington St; Millennium Park Room (5th Floor) from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

As part of the State Department’s mission, the Chicago community will have the rare opportunity to meet with 40 extraordinary women from Sub-Sahara and North Africa as part of the formal “African Women’s Entrepreneurship Program, launched by the State Department in 2010.

Showcase event featuring African handcrafted gourmet foods, skincare, home decor and fashion merchandise from women entrepreneurs

Chicago can help play a part in dismantling barriers to promote gender inequality in Africa which is an economic policy priority for the U.S.  Allows Chicagoans a rare glimpse into these extraordinary women’s lives and hear their personal stories of triumph as well as support them by buying their beautifully crafted wares. Finally, as the largest Fair Trade city in the US, Chicago fair trade retailers are also participating to provide ‘best practices’ as well as potential business partnerships.

Speakers/Partners: In conjunction with the State Department’s policy to advance and promote gender equality, there will be a representative from the State Department to talk about the AWEP program (see fact sheet for more details).  To support Chicago’s standing as a Fair Trade city, the president of Chicago Fair Trade will be able to provide local commentary on fair trade activity in Chicagoland.   

For more information about AWEP:

AWEP empowers thousands of African women entrepreneurs to create better business environments, spur economic growth and become voices of change in their communities.

Since 2010, more than 200 alumnae of AWEP have created more than 17,000 jobs and established 22 women’s business associations across Sub-Saharan Africa.

For more information about Chicago Fair Trade

Chicago Fair Trade is the largest fair trade coalition in the USA, which is unmatched anywhere in the United States. Chicago was named a Fair Trade city in 2011; a Sweatshop-free City in 2014; and Cook County became the largest Sweatshop-free Municipality in the U.S. in 2015. To learn more about Chicago Fair Trade, visit

For more information about WorldChicago, please visit