The Coca-Cola Foundation has announced a $3 million grant to Washington, D.C.-based Pact, a non-governmental organization working to promote health, economic empowerment, and food security in twenty-six developing countries, to support women's economic empowerment and job creation in Myanmar.
Pact will use the funds to expand its WORTH program, which assists groups of up to twenty-five women in the development of community banks that lend money for business start-ups and entrepreneurial efforts. In Myanmar, WORTH will help women support a variety of businesses, though Coca-Cola expects the program to eventually identify women entrepreneurs interested in becoming independent shopkeepers and distributors of its products.
The grant is part of Coca-Cola's existing 5 BY 20 commitment to empower five million women entrepreneurs across the globe by 2020. Coca-Cola plans to start doing business in Myanmar, pending U.S. government approval.
"We have seen the tremendous resilience and entrepreneurial energy of the people of Myanmar over our fifteen years working across the country," said Pact president and CEO Mark Viso. "Coca-Cola's generous contribution will allow even more women to tap their own potential, earn a dignified living, lift their families out of poverty, and to help all of Myanmar realize the promise of a brighter future."