On Tuesday 14 October, FFCEL (Fédération des Femmes Cheffes d’Entreprise du Luxembourg, The Luxembourg Association of Women Entrepreneurs) held a reception for its 10th birthday at the prestigious Cercle Cité.
The FFCEL enters its 10th year with over 200 members of 11 nationalities working across 18 different sectors. The organisation has come far since its inception in 2004, and its members are proud of their growing international network. Their objective is to achieve equal opportunities for men and women in Luxembourg’s economic and social environment.
Christiane Wickler is currently at the helm of the association, and in her role as President, opened the evening’s proceedings, congratulating members for their courage and initiative over the years. She went on to outline the values of the association, whereby “autonomy, dynamism, expertise and quality are fuelled by optimism.”
Lydia Mutsch, Minister for Equal Opportunities, commended the successes of female entrepreneurs, remarking particularly on the diversity of talent found in Luxembourg. In general, as a woman, it is not as easy to rise to the top in workforces dominated by men, or to be taken seriously and to be considered as competent. However, while women are fortunately undermined far less than they were just a few decades ago, the struggle for equal opportunities remains and women are generally under-represented in most fields. After reeling off a list of the exact percentages in each sector, Minister Mutsch concluded, “Men remain dominant in every sector aside from health, hygiene and fashion.” The FFCEL are working towards achieving more of a balance for both men and women across all sectors.
Minister Mutsch highlighted the need for such associations that promote the success of women, which is often overshadowed in the working world of men. FFCEL also exists to fight against stereotypes and to support women in their life and career choices. Minister Mutsch affirmed that the FFCEL “is a very important partner of the Ministry, without which many actions would not have been possible.”
For the first time in a long time the government has concrete and measurable figures and needs all citizens to participate, to be involved and to work towards their goal of achieving equal opportunities together. “It is only by acting that we can obtain more of a balance between the different professions for men and women.”
Laura Gucci, World President of The World Association of Women Entrepreneurs (FCEM), reflects back on when she first started to pave her way as an entrepreneur. “It took a lot of effort to appear strong and to be visible. It is not an easy path but it is a very enriching one. It’s not a game; it’s complicated. It involves too much money, too much energy, and too much risk. But nonetheless, young people should be able to try and we must push them.”
To continue the celebrations, an electric violinist and DJ kicked off the party atmosphere following a short cooking show by Kaempff-Kohler.
“Congratulations, Happy Birthday, and a big thank you!” – Lydia Mutsch, Minister of Equal Opportunities