Swissôtel Al Ghurair has pledged its commitment to supporting underprivileged communities in Africa by partnering with Evolvin’ Women, a Dubai-based social enterprise that helps UAE organisations enhance diversity and inclusion through socially-responsible initiatives.
Through the partnership the Dubai hotel is offering skills development placements to two talented women from rural areas of Ghana in West Africa, providing them with training, work experience and one-to-one mentoring for the next two years.
At the end of their placement, one of which is in the Food & Beverage department and the other in the Talent & Culture division, Evolvin’ Women will offer both participants the opportunity to share their skills and knowledge with their respective communities through volunteer work or with organisations where they can forge careers and gradually become financially independent.
The Evolvin’ Women programme is closely aligned to Accor’s RiiSE initiative, which promotes gender equality through diversity across the organisation globally, with a view to creating a happy, sustainable and positive professional environment for all employees.
“By joining Evolvin’ Women’s inspiring skills placement programme we play a key role in improving the long-term prospects of developing areas of Africa, providing women with invaluable training, which they can leverage to the benefit of their families and their communities,” said Emiel van Dijk, General Manager, Swissôtel Al Ghurair.
“It also reinforces the goals of Accor’s RiiSE initiative, which successfully supports the promotion of male and female talent by sharing knowledge and offering mentoring opportunities and we are honoured to be championing these values through this partnership, proving the hospitality industry can make a real positive social impact.”
Swissôtel Al Ghurair will provide both women with vital work experience, practical life-skills training and mentoring conducted by hotel staff and management. Before joining the Evolvin’ Women programme, both women studied for professional hotel qualifications in their home country.
When they return to Ghana, Evolvin’ Women will provide them with the opportunity to share best practices for the long-term benefit of their communities, with the ultimate goal of the initiative being to generate jobs and income, reduce hunger and poverty and improve the sustainability of livelihoods across Africa’s most disadvantaged areas.
Assia Riccio, Founder of Evolvin’ Women, said: “We are delighted to partner with Swissôtel Al Ghurair and are very fortunate to work with a dedicated team that is passionate about having a positive social impact on the lives of these women and their communities. Unemployed women who join our programme are looking for professional development and the opportunity to make a positive impact in the organisation they join. They will invest the knowledge acquired during their work placement in training their communities and creating sustainable tourism practices in rural areas.”
Swissôtel Al Ghurair’s collaboration with Evolvin’ Women meets many of its key ‘Talent and Culture’ goals, which include unity in diversity by integrating employees from all backgrounds and countries, with the hotel’s team members currently representing 13 nations globally, with a gender split of 54% men, 46% women.
The 620-room property is also fully committed to Accor’s RiiSE initiative, with a focus on nurturing and promoting highly-skilled talent, and is a crusader of female empowerment and inclusivity, having partnered with many organisations and initiatives championing both.
Parent company, the global Swissôtel brand, was a key supporter of the Dubai Women’s Run, offering expertise across a range of key areas to ensure the event achieved its goals and its important message reached as many people as possible, while the hotel was the exclusive hospitality partner for the event, a privilege that included hosting a gala dinner for leading women in business, VIPs, organisers and athletes.
The partnership with Evolvin’ Women is one of Swissôtel Al Ghurair’s key Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programmes for 2019, with more campaigns currently in planning.