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Women's Entrepreneurship Program - Palpa

Women's Entrepreneurship Program - Palpa

Women's Entrepreneurship Program - Palpa

Palpa, Nepal


The project supports the top women entrepreneurs selected through a district-wide enterprise challenge to expand their businesses and business potential, and to empower them to create bigger economic ripple effects across their communities. Their institutional and human capacities are strengthened via grant money, leadership and technical training, and networking and civic engagement opportunities.


Our ultimate vision is to accelerate 5001 rural entrepreneurs in the next 5 years, among whom 2000 will be women. Through WREAP, we aim to build a national movement of rural women entrepreneurs, who partake in our vision as key development partners, not just as beneficiaries, but also as decision–makers and agents of change as they accelerate their businesses, and also participate in nurturing entrepreneurial communities for a thriving Nepal.

We believe that in order to successfully support the growth of  women-led enterprises, women need, in addition to access to finance, strong community network and role models. Our community-based approach to entrepreneurship, thereby aims to engage key stakeholders such as government agencies, banks, cooperatives, and civic organizations to collaborate in identifying, empowering and accelerating their enterprises. As more women visibly and systematically engage with key stakeholders, others will follow suit in a domino effect.

Project Type
Resilience: Women's Entrepreneurship

Project Status

Project Cost
USD $24,150

Funds Raised
USD $15,840

Collaborating Partners
1. Nepal Rising - Austin ($2500)
2. Nepal Rising - Seattle ($2500)
3. Indiegogo ($10,840)

Run for Nepal - Seattle Half Marathon

Implementation Partner

Project Milestones

  • September 2 2017: Top 5 entrepreneurs selected and awarded NRs. 50,000 each

  • June 2017: 100 Days Leadership Campaign completed and NRs. 10,000 each awarded to Top 10 entrepreneurs

  • Nov 15 2016: Needs assessment of Top 20 entrepreneurs to guide the development of specific technical interventions and strategy for accelerating women entrepreneurship in Palpa

  • Nov 3 2016: Top 10 entrepreneurs announced and awarded cash prize to scale up their business

  • Sept 1 2016: Top 20 entrepreneurs identified

  • August 20-23 2016: Business model canvassing and book-keeping training to the Top 40 women entrepreneurs

  • June 18 2016: Top 40 entrepreneurs announced






Project Location: Palpa, Nepal
Beneficiary Community: Top 20 women entrepreneurs in Palpa

Project Goals

  • Business model canvassing and business registration training and facilitation

  • Needs assessment of the Top 20 women entrepreneurs to guide the development of specific technical interventions and strategy for accelerating their businesses

  • Design interventions to respond to the needs and challenges of the women entrepreneurs

  • Uddhyam Chautari on a regular basis (Focused on enhancing the local entrepreneurs’  network, along with knowledge and resource sharing)

  • Leadership Series (focused on engaging local government, business and civil society stakeholders)

  • Mentorship of the selected entrepreneurs to help them grow their businesses

  • Targeted outreach via collaboration with civic organizations like women’s groups, aama samuha, single women’s group, women cooperatives, etc.


Initial Condition:

  • Women, more than men, are “necessity entrepreneurs” which means that they practice businesses in silos, with lower rates of return, lower capital, and in less profitable sectors than men do

  • Limited promotion of women entrepreneurship at the community level  

  • Unequal growth and visibility between men and women entrepreneurs

  • Poor networking environment and lack of technical support to improve their businesses



Intro Video by Daayitwa (4:00)



Sept 2017 - Top 5 Entrepreneurs Awarded

Ms. Bishnu Karki, owner of Bhairab Agarbatti (Incense) Industry, from Dekul Dadaa, Palpa, has diversified her enterprise to include production of candles, broomsticks and plastic mats, in addition to incense. Karki successfully installed a machine to prepare raw materials for incense. The OCSI financed 80% of the purchase cost for the machine. Karki says, “Now, except for the scent used in the incense, all other raw materials can be made available in Palpa at the same prices as Butwal.”


Ms. Devi Malla is a organic vegetable farmer practicing innovative methods of farming in iron tunnels which are more lasting than the traditional bamboo tunnels. She has taken her business a step ahead by collectively purchasing a pick up van with other women entrepreneurs. They use the van to take their produce to market. Malla even stood for the recent local level election. However, she did not win.

Ms. Goma Bhandari, owner of Bhandari Lemon Farm in Masyam, Palpa has also very recently registered in the OCSI and thus formalized her enterprise. She purchased 8 ropanis of land, and digging activities have begun there. She plans to add 200 new varieties of grafted and local lemon to the already existing plantation of 300. Bhandari shares that the grafted variety has a shorter fruition period and also brings greater returns. It also has a good demand and so there is no fear of storage of unsold stock or danger from wild animals. Many of the villagers have been attracted to and begun lemon farming being influenced by Bhandari’s case.

Ms. Man Kumari Gaire from Krishi Sahara Kendra (Agriculture Support Centre), Khanigaun, Palpa aspires to start a local pharmaceutical/ veterinary service. She has received training in the same field, and has successfully been conducting trainings in proper management of livestock with a focus on goats. She is passionate about promoting animal husbandry in the community and readily provides interested entrepreneurs with mother-goats for breeding. Gaire has started an initiative to weigh the goats alive, as it is more profitable for farmers that way. In her leadership, insurance of 100 goats of local farmers is done.

Ms. Pawisara Rajali, owner of Sangharsha Dhaka Production, Tansen, Palpa invested in a sewing machine worth NRs. 11,000, and has also hired 2 staff. Rajali has completed trainings for stitching of 9 varieties of pouches and bags. Recently, she was in Kathmandu to participate in an exhibition; it was their first such experience. She is hopeful that soon she will expand her market reach to Kathmandu.


June 2017 - Jury Selection of Top 10 Entrepreneurs

Aug 2016 - Daayitwa Women Enterprise Challenge 2016 - Palpa