Women find success as soap manufactures

Tanahun, Mar. 10: In a remarkable turn of events, women in Myagde, Tanahun, have abandoned social media platforms like Facebook and TikTok to pursue business ventures, particularly in soap-making. 

Myagde Rural Municipality not only provides essential training but also assists in marketing the products, enabling these women to transition from social media users to successful soap-makers.

In a region where financial constraints were common, women previously engaged in browsing Internet and using social media have found a new source of income. Thanks to free soap-making training provided by the Small Enterprise Development Programme (MEDPA) for poverty alleviation in Myagde Rural Municipality, women in Thurp, Myagde Rural Municipality-4, have actively embraced entrepreneurship. Over an 18-month period, these women have developed their soap-making skills, recognizing the potential for sustainable income through micro-enterprises and cottage industries. With soap production requiring minimal investment, it has become an attractive option for many women.

Pradeep Neupane, head of the industry unit at Myagde Rural Municipality, emphasized the municipality’s commitment to empowering women and promoting their economic independence through skill development. Neupane highlighted the significant income potential associated with minimal investment, which motivated for the provision of training.

Furthermore, the rural municipality has facilitated sales channels for the produced soap. Narayan Prasad Adhikari, chief administrative officer, disclosed plans to mandate the use of locally produced soap in community schools, ward offices, and health centres within the municipality to boost sales.

Saraswati Shrestha, president of Myagde Soap Industry, established by village women, emphasized the importance of self-reliance gained through acquired skills, reducing dependence on others. Shrestha noted that women, previously occupied with household chores and social media during free time, now dedicate their afternoons to soap-making. Following two ten-day training sessions, the group has commenced soap production, with locally sourced ingredients such as neem, lemon, basil leaves, and honey. Additionally, they have formulated chemical-based products like Harpic and Phenol sourced from Chitwan and Pokhara.

The industry, initiated with an investment of 150 thousand rupees, has yielded promising results. Treasurer Lalumaya Malla expressed satisfaction with increased production, which has enabled financial independence and self-sufficiency.

Moreover, the affordability and quality of their products have fueled demand, with customers preferring their soap over commercial alternatives. Selling their soap at various events and markets has expanded their customer base, and their participation in the Women Entrepreneurs Exhibition and Fair organized by the Women Entrepreneurs Association Nepal in Damauli has further boosted their sales and recognition.

President Shrestha expressed delight at the positive reception of their soap at the exhibition, affirming their success in transitioning from social media users to thriving entrepreneurs.

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