Are you interested in contributing your insights about social enterprises and their role in supporting sustainable women’s economic empowerment? Do you want to help develop these types of initiatives in Syria?
If so, we invite you and your network to join us on Sparkblue's first Idea Challenge to share your knowledge, insights & experiences and help us to make a difference. Your comments are valuable and will be used by local Syrian initiatives to enhance their proposals using the power of crowdsourcing.
For this challenge, the community of interest (participants on SparkBlue) will act as virtual participants by engaging in discussions and contributing their unique viewpoints to physical participants who will be submitting proposals through a formal funding process. Given the language and technology barrier, UNDP staff, acting as mentors, will facilitate the discussion and ensure that important insights are implemented.
UNDP Economic Development and Livelihoods (EDL) portfolio launched the Social Enterprise Idea Challenge with the aim of supporting the development of new and/or existing social enterprises and to promote social enterprise as a viable and sustainable instrument for women's empowerment interventions in Syria.
The overall goal of this intervention is to enhance the role of social enterprises in addressing direct and indirect barriers to Women’s Economic Empowerment (WEE) in Syria. By addressing some of the challenges Syrian women face - for example, in enterprise, industry and trade - , social enterprises designed with WEE principles in mind have the potential to strengthen women's access to business opportunities and leadership roles within the private sector to advance sustainable and inclusive growth.
During the preparatory phase, UNDP has collected challenges related to women economic empowerment using four different modalities:
- Surveys with NGOs partners (59 national NGOs from 14 Syrian governorates)
- Survey with UNDP previously funded women initiatives (279 women beneficiaries)
- Interviews with women entrepreneurs around Syria (107 women entrepreneurs)
- Brainstorming sessions with specialists/academics in gender and women empowerment.
The UNDP EDL portfolio has invited ideas from candidates from all over Syria to help institutions, communities and individuals to face and overcome the many issues that arise while implementing WEE projects and initiatives. Supported Ideas under this initiative will be considered innovative if they offer a feasible and adoptable solution to one or more of the underlying challenges in a way that avoids duplication, redundancy or inefficiencies and can turn ideas into action and impact.
Candidates will attend a four days bootcamp with a group of Syrian experts and UNDP trainers and mentors in business model generation and business plan development. They will be able to gain a better understanding of principles related to WEE, Social Enterprises, Business Planning and Sustainability. After completing the training, the participants will be requested to develop and submit full business plans of a social enterprise in support of WEE. These will be reviewed by a board of experts. UNDP will invite 50 participants (maximum) to be engaged in the boot camp where a maximum of 25 projects will be selected for funding.