-programme seen as key to creating equal opportunities for women entrepreneurs
THE Centre for Local Business Development (CLBD), on Friday evening, kicked off the first phase of the second installment of its Accelerate-Her programme with a weekend bootcamp which will end on Sunday, May 15.
At the programme launch, Director of the CLBD, Natasha Gaskin-Peters, stated that Accelerate-Her aims to bridge the gap in Guyana as it relates to gender equality.
Giving a breakdown of the programme, she stated that it is expected to be conducted in three phases with the ongoing bootcamp being the first. Over the weekend, the women entrepreneurs will work to build their individual business model canvas with hands on training and one-on-one guidance from presenters.
“You will have a model that shows you your business as it is now but also what your business will be in the future. So, we know that goals are important in life; goals are important in business, so if we understand what the growth potential of our business is that means we are working towards something,” Gaskin-Peters said.
Regarding the second phase, she noted that the centre will select approximately 15 businesses to move forward and those entrepreneurs will go through more training to then forge ahead to the third and final phase.
Meanwhile, in delivering the feature, Minister of Human Services and Social Security, Dr Vindhya Persaud, stated that the intention of the programme and others like it is to ensure that there is equal opportunity and access to business opportunities for women.
She said: “The intention is to ensure that there is equally opportunity and access… one of the areas that I am very, very particular about is to remove the barriers that existed when it came to women accessing programmes out there.”
This, she said was the driving force behind the Women’s Innovation and Investment Network (WIIN) which is a programme that was launched under her ministry. The minister urged women to take advantage of the opportunities that are being made available to them.
She went on to say that with these and other programmes, the ministry would like to ensure that there is nothing that limits women from succeeding in their business and other endeavours.
Dr. Persaud while giving well wishes to the entrepreneurs, enforced the importance of networking and learning from each other during the programme and even after its conclusion.
Accelerate-Her targets local women owners, operators and managers of businesses with the aim of building leadership and business skills and growing their companies.
According to the CLBD they received over 130 applications from women entrepreneurs from seven regions and several sectors.
Some 39 women operating in areas such as logistics, marketing, recreation and consultancy, were shortlisted to participate in the bootcamp.
The centre had opened the call for applications in March and closed same in April.