Yesterday She Entrepreneurs, an initiative from the Swedish Institute in collaboration with Impact Invest launched its first session in its 6 month long digital programme. The overarching purpose of She Entrepreneurs is to support young women social entrepreneurs in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region and Sweden and allow them to emerge with a strong and active network of like-minded women who support each other in driving important changes in society. The hands-on and practical study programme consists of seminars, workshops and interactive learning methods combined with reflection sessions, team-building and practical exercises. Facilitators and expert mentors are available for guidance.
After meeting in smaller groups over the past few weeks yesterday, all 29 participants met for the very first time to start co-creating the learning culture of the programme and learn how their businesses can be part of the drive to fulfil the sustainable development goals. In addition, the participants met with their mentors and had fruitful discussions on growing and growth in a complex adaptive system.
According to Ceem Haidar, a participant from Lebanon, one of the biggest take-aways from the day was the realization that “experiences, prospects and challenges are shared across the region. The drive to succeed in our home country and give back is also shared”. Haidar is the founder of -ment, an agency working on strategic communication ,business development, content development and brand visualisation working with clients across multiple industries. Prompted by session leaders, Impact Invest’s Ruth Brännvall and Caroline Stiernstedt Sahlborn, participants considered narrowed their focus to one thing they hoped their business could change. Algerian participant Thiziri Idir proposed “to preserve aquatic life” touching upon the least discussed goal of the SDGS, namely the preservation of life below water. Idir runs Wairth,an insect breeding and processing startup rearing insects as an alternative protein source for fish.
The day ended with a musical performance by Sousou and Maher, a Senegalese- Swedish duo playing Kora. The participants will meet again on the 23rd of April to learn about Self leadership.