Caribbean Women Entrepreneurs Defying Assumptions
Twenty-eight (28) innovative and growth-oriented Caribbean women entrepreneurs and business owners attended the first Grow Your Business Workshop in Barbados from 16-18 September 2013.
The workshop was developed by the Women Innovators Network in the Caribbean (WINC), organized by infoDev, a global innovation and entrepreneurship program in the World Bank, and supported by the Canadian government. It is part of infoDev’s program that aims to build an enabling ecosystem to foster high-growth and sustainable enterprises throughout the Caribbean.
According to Grace Kyokunda, Program Coordinator of infoDev’s Entrepreneurship Program in the Caribbean, the quality of ideas seen at the women entrepreneurs’ workshop was very encouraging.“These women are very bright and motivated, and their potential to create businesses that impact their communities is clear. We hope that this workshop will help provide them with the support and resources they need to succeed.”
As part of the training, participants were called upon to push their creative boundaries and defy the assumptions that limit entrepreneurs, asking themselves the question ‘What if it is not true?’ The workshop was designed to encourage innovation and strengthen entrepreneur networks, and covered topics including innovation development, product differentiation and entrepreneurship.
Eunice Nisbett, Administrative Services Consultant/Book Marketing Strategist at Savvy Corporate Planners+, St Kitts, says: “The workshop provided an excellent opportunity for networking with other Caribbean women entrepreneurs and it was enlightening to see and learn from what they were doing with their businesses. We received some fantastic ideas to take our businesses on a path of continued growth. Thank you WINC for a very special workshop.”
The women who participated represented a diverse range of businesses, many in emerging technology industries. Entrepreneurs included growth and service consultants, online business managers, and digital marketing and management specialists, as well as fashion and jewelry manufacturers, and agro producers.
Participants hailed from Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, and the host country Barbados. A similar workshop will be held in Jamaica for women from Belize, Bahamas and Jamaica.
These workshops form part of a larger framework to support women entrepreneurs. Other areas will include incubation services and access to finance.
Growth-oriented women entrepreneurs who wish to benefit from such initiatives and join the network can find more information on the Facebook page.