She Entrepreneurs is a leadership programme for young emerging women social entrepreneurs in the Middle East, North Africa and Sweden. The programme aims to give the participants innovative tools for sustainable change while seeking to create an active network of women changemakers.
She Entrepreneurs runs for one year, with participants meeting for ten days in Sweden and one week in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. In between the modules, the participants work on their own initiative locally, coached by group mentors over digital platforms.
The participants are social entrepreneurs from Algeria, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Syria, Tunisia, Palestine, Yemen and Sweden who address social challenges and strive for positive social change through initiatives based on entrepreneurial principles. During the programme participants are provided with inspiration, knowledge and tools to develop a business idea for sustainable change that they have already started working on in their country or region. Through the programme, participants are also offered the opportunity to meet leading social and business entrepreneurs as well as become a part of an active network of women social entrepreneurs that supports personal and professional development.
The She Entrepreneurs programme includes the following areas:
- Knowledge building: theoretical and practical seminars, workshops and discussions on topics such as leadership, social entrepreneurship, business communications, branding, finance and funding.
- Project work: with inspiration and new tools the participants get an opportunity to further develop their social initiative and work on their business plans with the aim to create a more sustainable business.
- Study visits and meetings with entrepreneurs: organised study visits to relevant social business initiatives and inspiring social entrepreneurs in Sweden and the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. Discussions and constructive feedback on the participants’ social projects from leading social and business entrepreneurs and group mentors constitutes an important part of the programme and in the personal and professional development of the participants.
- Network: participants become members of an active network of young emerging women social entrepreneurs who support each other in driving change through innovative solutions.
Module 1: She Entrepreneurs in Sweden, 10 days
Participants get the opportunity to further develop a social business initiative that they have already started working on and meet other young women from the MENA region and Sweden working in the field of social entrepreneurship.
The module includes lectures and discussions on topics such as leadership, social entrepreneurship, communications, branding, finance and funding. Participants get an opportunity to work on their business plans and meet people from Swedish organisations, as well as receiving coaching and feedback on their social projects from leading social and business entrepreneurs.
In between the modules, the participants work on their own projects locally, coached by group mentors over digital platforms.
Module 2: She Entrepreneurs in the MENA region, one week
This offers an opportunity to maintain, build and expand the network. All participants will meet again to report back on the development of their social initiatives and to discuss and evaluate their involvement in the programme.
Participants will continue to build on their entrepreneurial skills through workshops, seminars and individual project work. They will be given the opportunity to meet with experts from the region who will share and discuss their practical experiences from work in the field, mixed with inspiring study visits with ideas and initiatives addressing societal and environmental challenges locally or regionally.
If you are accepted to the She Entrepreneurs Programme, all costs in association with programme participation will be covered by the Swedish Institute as detailed below.
Accommodation, food and travel
All costs related to accommodation, food and transport during the She Entrepreneurs Programme are covered by the Swedish Institute. The Institute will pay for air travel to and from Sweden and to the location of the second module of the programme in the MENA region. Participants are themselves responsible for costs related to transport within their own countries. Swedish participants are expected to stay at the same hotel(s) as the MENA participants during the first module in Sweden.
During the programme in Sweden all participants from the Middle East and North Africa will be insured against acute illness and accident through the Swedish State Group Insurance and personal insurance by the Swedish Legal, Financial and Administrative Service Agency (Kammarkollegiet). For the second module which will take place somewhere in the MENA region, all participants are kindly requested to purchase a travel insurance covering the period of the module in their respective home countries. The Swedish Institute will reimburse participants for the cost of the insurance later.
Applying for a visa
Selected participants are responsible for obtaining their visas in good time before departure to Sweden and other relevant countries. The Swedish Institute will contact all concerned embassies and inform them about the programme and the participants in order to facilitate the application process. When applying for a visa, the Swedish Institute will provide the participants with a letter of invitation and an insurance certificate, and will also cover the application cost. Selected participants will receive more information about how to arrange a visa for the first module in Sweden shortly after having been accepted to the programme.
Kindly note that it is the concerned embassies that assess all visa applications; the Swedish Institute can never guarantee that all of our selected participants will obtain visas. In recent years applicants living in conflict-ridden areas have in a few cases seen their visa applications rejected.
The call for applications for She Entrepreneurs 2016 is currently open! The deadline for applying is 8 October 2015 at midnight (Central European Time Zone).
To learn more about the application’s requirements and procedures click here. You can apply by filling the application’s form, click here to download it and then submit it through the online applications portal.