The past two months have been both challenging and rewarding, taking on the support role for the Women’s Entrepreneurship Network. So far the WENET has hosted three very successful network meetings with very high attendance levels. These network meetings take place the second Wednesday of every month at 5:00 pm and usually last between an hour to an hour and half. On top of these network meetings I have also been hosting committee meetings once every two weeks, the intent of the committee meetings are to assure all committee members are fulfilling their duties and brainstorming new ideas for entrepreneurship development in Georgetown. During both meetings the committee and the network have been letting their creative juices flow and have since developed both short and long term goals.
The first goal for the network is to register in Georgetown as a Guyanese Friendly Association, for those of you uninformed with the proper procedures of becoming any sort of recognized organization in Guyana, it’s tricky. First, an organization wishing to become a Guyanese Friendly Organization must write a constitution, however, there are no written requirements of what is necessary to include in a constitution. I am happy to say that after sitting down several times with another expat I was able to gain the insights on how to properly develop a constitution that would be found acceptable enough to be passed; however, it took my fellow expat seven tries to figure out necessary requirements. From this we are currently working together to write a requirements page for future societies wishing to make their organization a Guyanese Friendly Association, this will help others avoid the seven trial and errors J Presently the network and I are working on the finishing touches of the constitution and are hoping to have it finished and submitted by the end of the month.
The second goal brainstormed by WENET includes the influence and promotion of Women’s Entrepreneurship Network in Georgetown. The network has been very successful and constantly growing with new members coming out to every meeting. Because of this success, the network is focusing on promoting the network to other businesses and the private sector in Georgetown. I was lucky enough to meet the President of Guyana’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Clinton Urling. I am very grateful for the amount of support him and the Guyana Chamber of Commerce and Industry have put forward with the promotion and development of WENET. Thanks to President Urling, a week and a half ago I was given the opportunity to attend the Business Dinner and Business Guyana Magazine Launch where I had the pleasure sharing a table with the Canadian High Commissioner and American High Commissioner here in Guyana.
American High Commissioner: Brent Hardt, Peace Corps Volunteer: Tina Camera, CIDA Intern: Kendra Borutski, Canadian High Commissioner: David Devine
The Guyana Chamber of Commerce and Industry have now agreed to work in partnership with WENET to extend and promote the private sector development of Women’s Entrepreneurship in Georgetown. In one month WENET will be hosting its one year anniversary and will celebrate by hosting a fundraiser. This fundraiser intends to promote the Network and a variety of businesses and services of some of the female entrepreneurs who are part of WENET. As a celebration of their first year in Georgetown, all families and friends are welcome to attend this event and support the female entrepreneurs and their businesses. The Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Youth Challenge Guyana’ s WENET will be hosting a Kiddie’s corner which includes games and activities, a Creole Corner offering a delicious assortment of Guyanese dishes prepared by the women of WENET and various raffle prizes donated by the Women of WENET and local businesses in Georgetown. All funds raised will go towards the network and covering the cost of becoming a Guyanese Friendly Association. With the planning of the fundraiser and meetings with the Guyana Chamber of Commerce and Industry I have been non-stop, on the go for the past two weeks. I am able to able to say that I have successfully written my first media advisory, press release and facilitated a successful press conference for WENET (all within three days if I might add).
With the fundraiser less than one month away I am now focussing on supporting and mentoring the fundraising teams of the network, by working with the women one-on-one, hosting weekly fundraising committee meetings, setting goals, time frames and creating a realistic budget for the network. As you can see WENET has a lot in store over the next month and I cannot wait to see the great teamwork, mentorship and support each women will be providing to make the one year anniversary of WENET a success!