24 women entrepreneurs graduate from ‘Road to Growth’ programme
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British High Commissioner to Guyana, Jane Caroline Miller
British High Commissioner to Guyana, Jane Caroline Miller

TWENTY-FOUR women entrepreneurs on Saturday graduated from the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women – Road to Growth programme, aimed at enhancing the capacity and marketability of women-led businesses in Guyana.

This seven-week programme was made possible through a collaborative effort by the Cherie Blair Foundation, ExxonMobil Foundation and Action Invest Caribbean Incorporated, among others. It covered topics such as Knowing Your Market, Digital Marketing, Knowing Your Business, Understanding Financing, Managing Financial Relationships and Applying for Financing and Confidence-building.

Guyana Women Leadership Institute’s (GWLI), Senior Training Officer Sanjay Pooran said the purpose of this programme goes ‘hand in glove’ with the Human Services Ministry’s Women’s Innovation and Investment Network (WIIN).

As a brainchild of Minister Vindhya Persaud, WIIN has been helping hundreds of women by empowering them with the necessary skills and knowledge to become financially independent.  So far, the ministry has trained about 1,400 women, with the intention of training 3,000 in 2022.

Action Invest Caribbean Incorporated’s Chairman, Vishnu Doerga

“That is why we are here to help you acquire a better position at work or find a better job or even start a new business so we are excited for this collaboration, this opportunity to work with partners such as Action Coach so that we can impact the lives of women and girls across the country,” he said.

British High Commissioner to Guyana, Jane Caroline Miller thanked the graduates for recognising the need to advance their existing businesses by participating in the programme geared to boost women entrepreneurs.
She stated that the foundation’s vision to provide such opportunities to women is in the hopes that they can reach their full potential and thus, closing the global gender gap in entrepreneurship.

As such, she hopes that they cannot only use the knowledge given to expand their businesses to new heights, but to also share that knowledge to others in need and in keeping with the foundation’s philosophy to encourage mentorship amongst peers.

Miller advised the graduates to, “develop tools that will help you grow, learn from all of your failures and lastly, find yourself a mentor (to help you along the way to success).”

Action Invest Caribbean Incorporated’s Chairman, Vishnu Doerga said that while there were minor setbacks to conduct this programme amid the pandemic, systems were put in place to do so.

“It was a real pleasure for the team to be serving all of the participants in the road programme which is taking place in five countries. We did end up starting the programme towards the tail end of COVID, where in many countries they have already gone fully online and we had to negotiate for this, but it was worth it.”

Road to Growth-Guyana follows the successful roll-out of the foundation’s flagship training programme for women entrepreneurs in Mexico, Nigeria, Kenya, Vietnam and Indonesia.

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