Creating job opportunities and building self-confidence for the most vulnerable women


Emmaüs Défi



Thematic area

Education and training


Since 2016

  • Emmaüs Défi Boutique
    Emmaüs Défi Boutique
  • Jewelery workshop
    Jewelery workshop
  • Sewing workshop
    Sewing workshop

The context

In France, the unemployment rate is higher for women than for men. In addition, the Emmaüs Défi association realized that, within the scope of its job placement work, providing employment assistance to women is more complicated than for their male counterparts. Women face a number of constraints, including childcare, and often believe they have less credibility on the job market than men.


The project

The “Les Essenti’Elles” program envisions a different approach to readying women for the workplace. The goal is to is develop their skills and expand their employment opportunities with adapted sewing workshops and training that leads to certification. This project will also enable women on the job market to relearn how to take care of themselves, ensure their voices are heard and make decisions for themselves.


The support

Fondation CHANEL is supporting the “Les Essenti’Elles” program implemented by Emmaüs Défi to empower women with a three-pronged approach: build women’s self-esteem in their job search with workshops on social esthetics, self-presentation and theater; train women in different sewing skills by creating a dedicated workshop; and teach them sales techniques to broaden their professional horizons.

The expected results

  • Increase positive outcomes in job placement and training efforts
  • Make the sewing workshop self-sustaining by developing the brand “Les ReCréateurs d’Emmaüs Défi”
  • Reinforce and deepen women’s self-confidence
  • Boost women’s vocational skills with sales and sewing training


The partner

Emmaüs Défi is a social innovation lab whose mission is to identify the best solutions to fight extreme social exclusion and enable everyone to find personal dignity and a role in society. Its main business activity is upcycling used objects.

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