Entrepreneurship with Impact Ventures, a subsidiary of Ahead of the Curve established to build an ecosystem to support socially innovative business models in the Arab region, has launched The Impact training program in partnership with PepsiCo, MBC, Silatech, and Mansour Foundation, to encourage and support social entrepreneurs to become the social change of tomorrow.
The Impact, which aims to create a regional network of social entrepreneurs who are empowered, inspired and equipped to build sustainable social businesses, will be rolled out in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Lebanon and the United Arab Emirates through a series of five-day boot camps. The workshops will enable participants to learn, experience real life success stories and facilitate networking opportunities.
Commenting on the launch, Dina Sherif, Founding Partner of Ahead of the Curve said: ” The Middle East not only has to focus on societal challenges such as education, healthcare, environment, and poverty, but it also on creating sustainable jobs for our youth. Social entrepreneurship creates businesses that are economically viable, scalable, job creating and able to systemically solve a societal problem.
“This training program is built on a firm belief that alternative business models that have social innovation at their core have the ability to create multi-dimensional layers of value for the region. By 2016, The Impact training program hopes to empower more than 150 individuals with the knowledge and skills needed to successfully kick-start and scale their social enterprises, expose existing and aspiring social entrepreneurs to potential investors, mentors and board members, and provide new social enterprises with much needed seed investments,” she added.
Noha Hefny, Director of Corporate Affairs at PepsiCo Middle East and Africa, co-founders of the program said: “We are strong advocates of social entrepreneurship and the power that it has to drive sustainable development. As a company, we believe in Performance with Purpose, our belief that financial success goes hand in hand with leaving a positive imprint on society. Initiatives such as The Impact not only empower youth and drive economies, but also remind us all of our humanity and that there is a greater purpose than just making profit and driving financial results for our business. We believe that socially innovative business models have a powerful impact on societies and on the economy and are key to building a more sustainable future.”
“Entrepreneurship employs three success words efficiency, effectiveness and creativity. It maintains social economical harmony which is why it has philanthropic roots. As a foundation, I wish to fund success and I do so, by supporting youth and entrepreneurship in every sense. It’s the jackpot of change,” said Rania Hammoud, CEO Mansour Foundation.
Entrepreneurship with Impact Ventures will focus on three key areas; training and capacity development through The Impact training program; a fund to invest in early stage of social businesses, and research and advocacy.
From his side, Mazen Hayek, MBC Group’s Official Spokesman said: “We are thrilled to be part of this initiative; education and proper guidance are the way to resolve various youth unemployment matters nowadays. Together, with our partners, we are targeting youth with innovative solutions to society’s most pressing social problems”. Hayek further added: “We are seeking the ambitious and the persistent in today’s youth, aiming for a gradual social change”.
“The number of leading organizations supporting this initiative shows the importance of social entrepreneurship, at such a crucial time for the region and its youth. At Silatech, are proud to be part of a movement that can create value in so many ways. Social entrepreneurship can create thousands of sustainable jobs; and also transform people’s lives, their communities, as well as the region at large,” added Justin Sykes, Director, Enterprise Development at Silatech.
The training program will be based on three main learning stages- Inspire, educate and enable/connect.
The ‘inspire’ dimension aims to inspire and energize young Arab talent to become social entrepreneurs of the future, build sustainable social business that puts the Middle East back on the map of innovation, knowledge, economies and development. Meanwhile, the ‘educate’ dimension will provide young Arab talent with market and industry knowledge, innovation tools and business models while the ‘enable/connect’ elements will enable entrepreneurs to explore the feasibility of their social business idea.
Entrepreneurship with Impact Ventures is a subsidiary of Ahead of the curve, a social business dedicated to the promotion of sustainable management practice, inclusive market growth and social innovation. Entrepreneurship with Impact Ventures was created to support the proliferation of social and inclusive business models across the Middle East and growth markets.