“Shaping our Future. Building our Legacy” — A year in review of the #SHE_BUILDS Global Initiative

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#SHE_BUILDS Global Initiative celebrates a groundbreaking 1st year while focusing on the next twenty years of Haiti’s ecosystem development.

Founded in 2018 by award-winning Haitian-American entrepreneur, Shaïna Silva, the #SHE_BUILDS Global Initiative launched as a platform to connect Haitian women to global opportunities and value chains.

OUR YEAR IN REVIEW

Since its founding, #SHE_BUILDS has created a global leadership network that spans 20 city chapters across 4 continents. From New York City to Gonaives, Dubai to San Francisco, #SHE_BUILDS Ambassadors have organized regular events in their respective cities to build the community network, share resources and spotlight the stories and achievements of incredible local Haitian women leaders.

Throughout the year, #SHE_BUILDS has launched various initiatives that are deemed as “tools in their toolbox” designed to address gaps in the ecosystem, and to equip its members with insights, skills, access to global markets, ecosystem discovery, and collective impact. These tools have already materialized in accelerating progress within the community, with women at the forefront of it all.

THE TOOLS

Insights:

“In order to build the future we imagine, we must first understand the problems that hold us back” — Shaina Silva, Founder of the #SHE_BUILDS Global Initiative. Through its Digital Townhalls held on Facebook Livestream, #SHE_BUILDS offers the community an opportunity to gain awareness and understanding of the challenges and opportunities that exist in Haiti, learn from those who are aiming to solve those problems, as well as discover models that have worked in other countries. Some of the topics covered included “E-Governance & Building a Smart Nation” with appearances from an Estonian Government representative, and “Modernizing Local Industries — How Haiti can Leapfrog into the 4th Industrial”. A new calendar of townhalls is scheduled for 2020

Skills:

To address the skills gap, #SHE_BUILDS is ramping up to launch its Moonshot Academy, where entrepreneurs will have an opportunity to gain skills in leadership, business, design, and technology. Set to launch in 2020, the Moonshot Academy aims to facilitate Haitian women in becoming tech-enabled world class entrepreneurs.

Market Access:

Through its Global Chapter Network, #SHE_BUILDS has created a bridge that allows members of its community to build business and professional relationships across the planet. This global network is particularly valuable for women in business seeking to enter new markets. An entrepreneur in Port-au-Prince can now access the market in San Francisco through the #SHE_BUILDS San Francisco chapter. Members of the community are able to access the global leadership network through the #SHE_BUILDS slack channel.

Ecosystem Discovery:

In August of this year, #SHE_BUILDS launched its first annual #SHE_BUILDS_THEFUTURE Festival hosting over 460 professionals, entrepreneurs and university students from Haiti and across the world. With prominent speakers in attendance, including Michèle Pierre-Louis- Former Prime Minister of Haiti and founder of Fokal, Rachel Hislop- Editor in Chief of OkayAfrica, Cristina Ramos- Senior Producer at the Oprah Winfrey Network, Naomy Grand-Pierre- Olympic Swimmer, Senator Dieudonne Luma- the only female senator in Haiti’s 50th parliament, and Obama Foundation Fellow and founder of Anseye pou Ayiti, Nedgine Paul Deroly, the Festival touched on new approaches, models and tools to a variety subjects including Nation Building as a collective necessity to address governance, education, food, agriculture, environment, and overall better systems for a modern society. Other themes included entrepreneurship and innovation as a major driver of the economy, and the creative industries as a competitive advantage to harness for global market positioning.

The festival included a variety of workshops hosted by the likes of Google, HR-Connect, and Banj, with performances by rising hiphop artist Niska, a small business marketplace featuring local and international entrepreneurs, and a presentation by Lorraine Manuel Steed on the journey of her African slave ancestor. A short recap of the festival was produced by The Haitian Times

Collective Impact:

Making an impact in business and society is synonymous with #SHE_BUILDS’ mission. Consequently, the organization has formulated a roadmap to position Haiti as a self-sustainable Green Nation by 2040. Titled “Renaissance2040”, this initiative aims to engage local citizens, international diaspora and friends of Haiti in collective action to move the country towards a more climate-resilient circular economy. The #SHE_BUILDS community will have an opportunity to join forces as a unit to achieve 20 goals in the next 20 years. Through the Renaissance2040, #SHE_BUILDS leaders aim to propel Haiti into a new Era of self-sustainability and prosperity.

MOVING FORWARD

As 2020 quickly approaches, #SHE_BUILDS plans to march head-on into the new decade by launching the Renaissance2040 Movement, with chapter events hosted by their global chapter ambassadors worldwide starting in March 2020. Stay tuned for activities and how you can get involved by following #SHE_BUILDS on FacebookInstagram, and TwitterLinkedIn, Youtube and newsletter.

#SHE_BUILDS’ incredible year in review has been made possible through the support and collaboration of ecosystem partners including FokalWOCOFotokonbit#SMARTFANMPRODEV, CHES, ImpactHubBanj, Unibank, Haitian Times, to name a few.

If you would like more information about the #SHE_BUILDS Global Initiative and the Renaissance Roadmap, or to schedule an interview, please contact [Nathalie March-Charles Arias] at [nmarccharles@hr-connectht.com].