On Wednesday, February 15th 2017, Herself arranged a Graduation Ceremony for their second cohort of 60 women entrepreneurs ready to take on the world.
An initiative of the entrepreneurship wing of Punjab Information Technology Board (PITB), Herself is a programme designed to empower women in Pakistan by enlightening them about all opportunities awaiting in the technical sector. The programme also provides training to enable them to become successful entrepreneurs.
Vision behind Herself is to increase the number of women working in technical domains by educating them to get involved in the workforce even while sitting at homes.
In only six months, the program has empowered 100+ women by providing them entrepreneurial and pre-incubation training by professional trainers, enabling them to become successful entrepreneurs. On the completion of the second cycle, which had taken off in November, Herself organized a Graduation Ceremony for their second cohort comprising of 60 passionate women.
The graduation kicked off when Zainab Tariq, Co-Manager Herself and Ayesha Mubashir, Marketing & PR Executive, Herself, took the stage to address the audience telling everything about the program including the vision, progress, partnerships and future plan. They made sure every attendee got a clear idea about Herself and what it entails.
Carrying the event forward Dr. Umar Saif, Chairman Punjab Information Technology Board, joined for an opening speech in which he discussed the entrepreneurial culture in Pakistan along with the role and importance of women in the workforce, in his opening speech. He appreciated the efforts of the women who contributed in making the cycle a success and encouraged them to fly high in the future as well. He said
“No economy can ever progress if its women don’t progress and are with little job opportunities. Venturing into entrepreneurship would benefit the society as a whole”.
Some inspirational women were invited for the event including Angela Braid, Co-Founder Polly and Other Stories, Anoosha Shaigan, Vice President Courting the Law and Ms. Sadaffe Abif, Co-Founder CIRCLE. They joined the event for a panel discussion on ‘The importance of tech in a woman’s life’ moderated by Zainab Tariq. The discussion remained engaging for the audience and highlighted some key problems and solutions being faced by women entrepreneurs. Ms. Sadaffe Abid said
“My first advice is to develop a thick skin. It’s not going to be easy. Make full use of the resources available”.
A Business Idea Competition was held among three trainees of the second cohort in which each of them presented their own business idea. This was judged by the panelists who thought the idea of Sayyada Huda, ‘TeamUp’, in which every sportsperson could make a team online and play whenever he/she wants, was the best, and hence awarded her the first prize.
Towards the end of the event, Nabeel A. Qadeer, Director Entrepreneurship Punjab Information Technology Board joined for a closing note in which he discussed why he started the project and where he wants to take it in the future. He congratulated all graduates and winner of the Business Idea Competition and wished them the best for future.
To end the ceremony, certificates were distributed to all trainers, trainees and judges. It was an overwhelming moment for all participants of the program and displayed the success of the cycle beautifully to the attendees.