The Women’s Entrepreneurship Accelerator (WEA) hosted a pivotal UNGA virtual side-event, “Joining Forces to Drive Change,” on Tuesday, September 28 marking the 2nd anniversary of its launch.
WEA was established during UNGA 75 in consultation with six UN agencies and private-sector partner Mary Kay, with the impressive goal to empower 5 million women entrepreneurs by 2030. Moderated by WE Empower Co-Chair, Amanda Ellis, the event showcased a remarkable presenter lineup.
Introductory remarks made by Deborah Gibbins, Chief Operating Officer of Mary Kay, included a call to action for strategic, multi-stakeholder partnerships:
"Today I want to make a call to all the commitment makers, who want to invest in women's entrepreneurship to join forces with WEA, commit to join us, let's catalyze entrepreneurship commitments for a multiplied impact.”
Deborah Gibbins, Chief Operating Officer, Mary Kay
Key Speakers relayed striking statistics on the pandemic's compounding effects on gender inequality, contrasted against the powerful transformational capabilities of women's entrepreneurship. The event’s second portion covered action — emerging policies and practices that encourage women’s leadership in businesses.
“I do think that this crisis is an opportunity to do things differently, which is why I have taken to saying, ‘building forward, differently’ versus ‘building back, better’ because we don’t really want to go back,” says Anita Bhatia, Assistant Secretary General and Deputy Executive Director at UN Women.
Vinicius Pinheiro, Assistant Director General and Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean, International Labour Organization (ILO)
Pamela Coke-Hamilton, Executive Director International Trade Centre (ITC)
Anita Bhatia, Assistant Secretary General and Deputy Executive Director, UN Women
Strategic priorities and welcoming new partners
Event Moderator and WE Empower Co-Chair, Amanda Ellis states, “I am thrilled today to announce that the International Telecommunication Union, the Commonwealth Businesswomen’s Network, and the WE Empower UN SDG Challenge will all formally be joining the Women’s Entrepreneurship Accelerator.”
Doreen Bogdan-Martin, Director, Telecommunications Development Bureau, International Telecommunication Union
Watch: Strategic Priorities and Welcoming New Partners Session
Aldijana Šišić, Chief, Multi Stakeholder Partnerships speaks to the importance of today’s discussion, not only to inspire collective action, but to deliver on everything mentioned needed to support women entrepreneurship and those supporting them.
Aldijana Šišić, Chief, Multi Stakeholder Partnerships and Advisory Services at UN Women
Watch: Closing Commentary
WE Empower is thrilled to engage with the Women Entrepreneur’s Accelerator as a new partner to, “build forward, differently” and most importantly ‘together’ as Aldijana Šišić poignantly added during her closing remarks.
▶Watch: “Joining Forces to Drive Change"