Launch of FORTER'ESS Project - Strengthening the resilience and promotion of decent work of women-led SSE organizations in Tunisia

The FORTER’ESS project is the result of a partnership between the Tunisian Government, the Canadian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as donor, and the International Labour Organization as implementing agency. It aims to strengthen the resilience of women-led Social and Solidarity Economy Organizations (SSEOs) affected by COVID-19 in two disadvantaged regions of Tunisia.

News | 11 March 2021
Women-led SSEOs, the majority of which are in their start-up stage have not yet reached a stage of development that would enable them to withstand crises such as the Covid-19 crisis. The Covid-19 pandemic has in fact increased their vulnerability and the degree of precariousness of their members, due in particular to the containment measures that forced them to slow down or even stop their activities. In the absence of specific support and accompaniment, these women-led SSEOs, most of them established within the last three years, run the risk of permanent cessation of their activities with serious economic, social and health consequences on thousands of women and their families, who may find themselves unemployed or forced to return to the informal economy.

This explains the urgent need to provide support to these organisations to ensure their survival and to enable them to continue their development, expand their activities and services so that they continue to play a vital role in the economic and social empowerment of thousands of women.

To this end, the project is structured around three intermediate results. The first two aim to provide direct support to women-led SSEOs in two disadvantaged regions to help them cope with the economic, social and health impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic, while the third goal is to support the establishment of an enabling and gender-sensitive environment for SSE. The intermediate outcomes of this project are:
  • Consolidation of SSE women's organisations in two disadvantaged regions;
  • Improvement of workplace protection and working conditions of women entrepreneurs and workers in women-led SSEOs in two disadvantaged regions;
  • Establishment of an inclusive, equitable and favourable ecosystem for SSE and its organisations.