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WOMED Award South rewards female entrepreneurship

Debbie Van Dijck
02 April 2017
Every two years, the Markant non-profit organisation and the NGO Trias* present a female entrepreneur from the South with the WOMED Award South. This year, on 8 March 2017, the prize was awarded to the courageous Gloria Isabel Ambrosio from El Salvador.


The WOMED Award South, a biannual collaboration between Markant and Trias, honours a female entrepreneur from the South. Both organisations foster entrepreneurship. This year, three strong women from El Salvador were in the running to walk away with the award. They demonstrated that, in spite of difficult circumstances, it is still possible to be entrepreneurial. Women are confronted with widespread discrimination in El Salvador. Survival often takes priority over entrepreneurship. In the end, Gloria was chosen as a role model for female entrepreneurship in El Salvador, which is a typical male stronghold.

It is evident that Gloria has not had an easy life. At the age of 13, she lost her parents, brother and sister in the civil war of the 1980s. Gloria remained in a refugee camp in Honduras for 9 years. There she learnt to both persevere and dream. Following the civil war, she returned to El Salvador and took every opportunity to follow educational courses. In 2013, she was the founder of a cooperative enterprise along with 30 other women. Only Gloria and 5 other women remain in the cooperative. The cooperative produces and sells natural shampoos, soaps and cleaning products.


(1) The NGO Trias is supported by the Belgian Development Cooperation

I hope that my story inspires other women to overcome hardship in their lives. Everyone wants to progress, but faith in your own abilities is often lacking.

Gloria Isabel Ambrosio
Women Entrepreneurship El Salvador