Impact Story

Rising Dough: Pascaline Sigoro’s Journey to Sustainable Success

Cheryz Sugar is a Kenyan based sol-proprietorship business that deals with baking of cakes. Pascaline Sigoro the owner of the business, bakes her cakes from her home in Rongai, and distributes it to her customers. “My main customers are mostly from referrals from people who have tasted my cake,” Pascaline shared with a hint of pride, acknowledging the power of word-of-mouth in growing her business. 

Despite her business success Pascaline faced a challenge that many entrepreneurs grapple with, staying informed and relevant in the ever-changing world. She recognized the need to align her business with the global goals, specifically the Sustainable Developmemt Goals (SDGs) to not only elevate her bakery but also contribute positively to the world. 

She joined the Spearheading Women SME program, a collaborative effort by Invest in Africa (IIA) and the World University Service of Canada (WUSC) that aimed to empower women entrepreneurs with knowledge and tools to embrace Environmental Social Governance (ESG) sustainability practices in their businesses. 

From the program, one significant aspect Pascaline decided to address was her business’s water usage. She implemented water recycling measures, transforming her bakery into an eco-friendly haven. She also learnt how she can use electricity more efficiently by consolidating her cake making process. “I would previously make cakes per order but now I bake cakes from the many orders I get at once and bake them all at once saving me electricity” she said added. 

Pascaline credited her understanding of the SDGs to a technical assistance program she undertook. The program not only enlightened her about sustainable practices but also pushed her to think creatively, exploring avenues she had never considered before. The experience was eye-opening, highlighting the importance of sustainable packaging and inspiring her to offer discounts to customers who returned her eco-friendly boxes for recycling. 

In applying the lessons learned, Pascaline revamped her business model. Natural products took center stage in her creations, eliminating synthetic elements. “The reason my cakes are priced higher is because I use natural fruits, not synthetic elements and advice my coach from the program emphasized I should continue.” Pascaline elaborated 

Prior to the program, Pascaline admitted she had not given much thought to climate change. However, the training had a transformative effect, not just on her business but on her personal outlook. It became more than running a bakery; it became a journey of personal growth not only as a business owner but also in her profession as a lawyer. 

Pascaline’s determination to make a difference is reflected not only in her delicious confections but also in her commitment to a sustainable, eco-friendly future. With aspirations to open a bakery shop one day, Pascaline is eager to continue implementing the valuable lessons she has learned, ensuring that her business remains a beacon of sustainability and a source of inspiration for others.