PfC has programmes in both Yangon and Inle Lake to build skills among local entrepreneurs. We also contribute with grants and seed funds for sustainable businesses.
The PfC Knowledge Sharing Centre (KSC) in Yangon offers women entrepreneurs ongoing training and individual coaching. The training addresses basic financial management and business activities, marketing, pitching business ideas, strategic communication and leadership. The training is provided by local staff as well as by specially hired experts.
Women’s Entrepreneurship Day
Since 2014 PfC has organised the Women’s Entrepreneurship Day (WED) in Myanmar to celebrate women entrepreneurs. At WED, business experts hold presentations and a variety of prizes have been awarded to female entrepreneurs. This annual event enhances knowledge and network development with a view to inspiring entrepreneurship among the women of Myanmar. The event has also enhanced PfC’s understanding of what women entrepreneurs in Myanmar want in terms of knowledge and a network, and how we can work to enable their access to these.
Mentor networks for women
Myanmar Women’s Mentoring Network in Yangon works on building bridges between established women leaders in business and younger women. The goal is to inspire young women to assume leadership positions by creating an arena where women can share knowledge and experiences and where these young women can improve their professional skills and build networks. Mentoring events are organised, as are debate circles and courses where young women can come to learn what it takes – and to see that it can be done. This initiative was launched by Victoria Cook in cooperation with PfC.
Courses and coaching for entrepreneurs
PfC supports local entrepreneurs in the Inle area by holding courses and giving advice to local entrepreneurs and small businesses, especially in tourism. The training addresses different aspects of running a business, such as basic financial management and operations, product development, marketing, pitching business ideas, strategic communication and leadership. The courses are provided both by PfC KSC staff and external specialists. PfC also supports one-to-one coaching, for instance with local businesses that participate in business competitions with other international organisations or companies, product development or website development.
Cooperation with social entrepreneurs
An example of cooperation with and investment in local entrepreneurship is our cooperation with the social entrepreneurs Yangon Bakehouse (YBH). The founders of YBH wished to combine the idea of establishing a western-style coffeehouse chain in Myanmar with providing young, marginalised women with vocational education and training. The women undergo a ten-month training programme where they are taught basic life skills in addition to baking, cooking and service skills. PfC supplies the English teaching to the programme and has also given YBH a loan for the establishment of a sales outlet on the ground floor of the Telenor building in central Yangon. PfC has also put YBH in touch with a partner in Norway, Drueklasen AS, which has shared expertise.
Read more about the cooperation between Drueklasen and Yangon Bakehouse.