How NatureLock Foods is Uplifting Single Mothers

How NatureLock Foods is Uplifting Single Mothers

NatureLock day care

 

One year ago we started NatureLock Foods. Since then, our team has grown from 5 to 48 people. In the process, we’ve nurtured a remarkable company culture that has changed us all. A key element of our company identity has become employing people with barriers to employment, especially young single mothers. On International Women’s Day 2022, we are sharing these key learnings, hoping that they will inspire other organizations to transform their company culture and policies, too.

Clear intentions

From the onset it was the intention of our co-founders Tei Mukunya Oundo and Wilco Vermeer to use the business as a force for promoting gender equality. In Kenya, women for instance still get paid 32% less than men, if they find a formal job at all. Only 18% of firms have women in top management.

Female leadership throughout the company

CEO Tei Mukunya Oundo takes pride in the fact that at NatureLock Foods “women are pushing boundaries, making a difference and challenging bias every day. We enable this culture by a set of policies and a caring, open attitude towards each other.” Female leadership plays a key role in setting our company culture and offering role models to young women.

 

NatureLock production team

Policies and support for single moms

Creating an enabling environment for women, especially those with barriers to employment like single moms, takes much more than just hiring. We have created policies and services attuned to their needs. These policies include:

  • A hiring policy that prioritizes hiring people with barriers to employment, e.g. single mothers
  • Free on-site day care
  • A living wage policy for all employees
  • Free company lunches
  • Health insurance
  • Soft loans that enable employees to pay down payments and move to housing closer to the workplace
  • Personal development trainings, including on financial literacy and running an employees savings group (chama)

If you are interested in getting more detailed information about our workforce policies or how to implement them in your organization, feel free to reach out to info@naturelockfoods.com