African Women Entrepreneurs. (Photo Courtesy: Afrika News)
African Women Entrepreneurs. (Photo Courtesy: Afrika News)

The Centre for Global Enterprise (CGE) has launched a new training programme dedicated to African women entrepreneurs, with applications now open to the inaugural edition of the African Women Entrepreneurship Cooperative (AWEC).

AWEC is a 12-month training programme which aims to build a pan-African community of women entrepreneurs and business owners, and empower them with the strategy, leadership and business management skills needed for growth and economic advancement.

The majority of the programme will be delivered via an online learning platform, involving video tutorials, course activities and materials, and mentoring and coaching sessions.

There will also be a number of peer sessions to facilitate the building of a pan-African network, and to share experiences and develop soft skills.

Two in-person Leadership Summits will be held throughout the year-long programme – tentatively scheduled for Kigali, Rwanda and Casablanca, Morocco.

Founded by former IBM chairman and chief executive officer (CEO) Sam Palmisano, CGE has secured philanthropic funding to cover the fees of all participants.

“AWEC is an inclusive programme and we encourage women from across Africa and its diaspora to apply,” said Karen Sippel, managing director of AWEC.

“We welcome not only the savvy business woman who has successfully run her company for many years and needs additional management skills to scale, but also the employee who has identified a need in her society and aspires to build a company to meet that need. We hope that AWEC is the spark that enables the next great generation of African women entrepreneurs.”

Those that wish to send in their applications should do so, not later than February 14th, 2018.

Key Dates for 2018-2019
31 January 2018 Application period opens.
14 February 2018 Application period closes.
1 March 2018 Acceptance notifications sent.
19 March 2018 Orientation opens.
3 April 2018 AWEC Launch / Welcome Session (online video conference).
April 2018-March 2019 Core AWEC programming.
September 2018 First Leadership Summit (Location TBD).
March 2019 Second Leadership Summit (Location TBD).
3 April 2019 Final live session.
April 2019 Certificates of Completion sent.

This article has been written with inputs from Disrupt Africa and The CGE