Local women get tourism funds

IOM and OCIT officials with Chessika Jim, left, and Estella Matthew who are holding their certificates of recognition that came with seed funding for their business plans.

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) in partnership with the Office of Commerce Investment and Tourism (OCIT) recognized two local entrepreneurs at a special ceremony late last month.

Estella Matthew and Chessika Jim are the first to receive seed funding through the Ao Kapijuknen Women-Led Domestic Tourism Pilot Program. The two women went through an expression of interest and feasibility site assessment process through which their proposals to develop a new tourism business on Majuro and Arno, respectively, were assessed across a range of criteria, according to the two agencies.

In addition to receiving the seed funding they will receive ongoing training, support and monitoring to help them develop their business and receive their first visitors. The project is funded by the IOM International Development Fund (IDF) and implemented in partnership with OCIT Tourism Division. It runs through 2022.