Ana Virgínia Santos, 39, a resident of Valverde, Nova Iguaçu, is a craftswoman and responsible for the Dona Onça Collective, which brings together sustainable entrepreneurs. Ana explains that the name Dona Onça was given because she was seen as fierce, “not for any reason, but out of the need to assert herself and show her existence.” (Women Who Inspire, p.19, 2022) 

Like Ana, many women become entrepreneurs out of necessity and just to survive. In Brazil, the majority of households are headed by women and out of every 10 female heads of households, six6 are black. According to the Dieese bulletin (2023), the data comes with wage inequality and lack of job opportunities, unemployment, and underemployment. Despite this, it is unquestionable that the effects of women’s productive force are fundamental for the survival and maintenance of families. Women entrepreneurs inspire other women to seek ways to generate or supplement income. 

Women Who Inspire 

The Advisory and Planning for Development – Asplande works on the socioeconomic inclusion of women living in the peripheries. The institution has been operating since 1992 and serves around 1,000 women annually. Get to know the collection Women Who Inspire, who are part of the Cooperative Network of Women Entrepreneurs of the Metropolitan Region of Rio de Janeiro and work in various types of businesses. Read these inspiring stories of women who are entrepreneurs and excel in their work! 

Women Who Inspire Volume 1 

Women Who Inspire Volume 2 

The strength of the black Latin American and Caribbean woman 

To provide more recognition of and visibility to the struggle and resistance of black, Latin American, and Caribbean women, the UN established July 25 as a day to acknowledge the defense of women’s rights and as a warning against exploitation, oppression, and racism. In Brazil, the date is also a tribute to Tereza de Benguela, a quilombola leader from the 18th century. Known as “Queen Tereza,” who was the political and military leader of the Quilombo de Quariterê…”