On the 23rd of August 2023, Team FEEROSA conducted a pivotal focus group discussion in Peshawar, Pakistan, the capital city of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. Peshawar, often referred to as the “City of Flowers,” stands as a unique cultural and economic hub in the region, and its significance in the context of entrepreneurship and women’s empowerment is noteworthy. Peshawar is predominantly inhabited by the Pashtuns, the second-largest ethnic group in Pakistan, which contributes to its rich cultural tapestry and diversity. As the provincial capital, Peshawar plays a central role in the administrative, economic, and social aspects of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
Seven women entrepreneurs took part in this focus group, each hailing from diverse socio-economic backgrounds. This reflects the inclusive nature of entrepreneurship in Peshawar, where women from various walks of life are actively engaged in business endeavors. What sets these women apart is their shared commitment to education, with each of them completing higher education. This emphasis on education aligns with the broader efforts in Peshawar to enhance human capital and promote knowledge-based entrepreneurship.
The age group of the participants ranged from 30 to 60 years, showcasing the multi-generational character of female entrepreneurship in the city. This age diversity provides a unique perspective on how entrepreneurship has evolved and adapted over time. Furthermore, these women brought to the discussion a diverse array of business portfolios, including industrial start ups, beauty salons and consultancy firms. This diversity illustrates the scope and opportunities available in Peshawar for women entrepreneurs across various sectors.
The primary objective of the focus group was to understand the distinct challenges that female entrepreneurs face in Peshawar. Their stories unveil the resilience and innovation of women in the region who are striving to overcome these challenges. This event serves as a stepping stone towards addressing these obstacles and fostering an environment where female entrepreneurs can thrive, contributing to the economic and social development of Peshawar and the broader Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.