Entrepreneurship has been viewed as key in economic development. As a University with a technology and entrepreneurship mandate, the Harare Institute of Technology, in partnership with Homelink, (a subsidiary of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe) successfully hosted the first edition of the Women Entrepreneurship Development Training programme.
The programme was held from September 25-29, at the Institute campus in Belvedere, under the theme: “Entrepreneurship Mindset for Sustainable Businesses”.
The programme was facilitated by the Technopreneurship Development Centre of HIT.
Vice Chancellor of the Harare Institute of Technology, Eng Quinton Kanhukamwe hailed the partnership with Homelink Finance, which seeks to promote the status of women; while reinforcing their role in economic development.
Managing Director of Homelink Finance, Mr Desmond Ali also underscored the importance of entrepreneurship; adding that women were uniquely positioned to establish their own enterprises and play a meaningful role in the country’s development.
The Women Entrepreneurship Development Training (WEDT) is a programme designed to help women in building their capacity as future business leaders in Zimbabwe. The programme included over seventy women, from diverse backgrounds; and captured emerging and aspiring entrepreneurs, college and university graduates, bankers, corporates, academics, youth and women’s cooperatives.
The programme is a week-long, short term, intensive entrepreneurship training programme that offers a wide range of courses including entrepreneurial mind set, business plan writing, strategic planning, marketing, entrepreneurial finance, business communication and more.
The programme is also designed to empower women to become leading entrepreneurs and contributing to the economic development of Zimbabwe. It also provides participants with the opportunity to network with others for potential multinational ventures in the future.
The main objective of WEDT is to inculcate an entrepreneurial mindset among women so that, instead of searching for employment, they create it themselves, by utilising available resources and opportunities.
The participants were equipped with requisite skills which will facilitate a mind-set change; enabling them to become global entrepreneurs, capable of starting their own hi-tech enterprises. As part of the objectives, the WEDT event created business connections, knowledge-sharing and peer-learning, networking opportunities and dialogue for all delegates and attendees.
Participants were addressed by keynote speakers who greatly enriched the audience with their presentations. These included Mr Desmond Ali, the Managing Director of Homelink Finance, Dr Maxwell Chanakira, the Pro Vice Chancellor of the Harare Institute of Technology, Ms Nonhlanhla Chiromo, the Chief Inspector for Banks from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe and Mrs Salome Mutsinze, the Chief Executive Officer of Mother Touch Group of Schools.
Speaking during the training programme, Lecturer in the Technopreneurship Development Centre (TDC) Ms Mercy Masunda said the entrepreneurship spirit is the most powerful tool for women to use in order to create jobs, nourish commerce, and to curb the brain drain, so as to achieve sustainable development.
The WEDT programme consisted of both practicals; with team building and project design sessions as well as an informative part delivered by a dynamic team of experts from industry, highly qualified academics and practitioners from HIT.
The seminar’s, main goal was the exchange of experiences, best practices and development of entrepreneurship-related projects. Group exercises and team development activities were used to foster group cohesion, negotiation and presentation strategies. Presentations, practical workshops and exercises provided background information, and assessment through group dynamics to implement the cross-cutting focus on entrepreneurship. The programme was divided into full day lectures and practical groups and presentations.
For details on our programmes, Email: [email protected]; visit our website on http://www.hit.ac.zw; like us on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/HarareInstituteofTechnology; follow us on Twitter https://twitter.com/HarareInstitute; Telephone: 04-741422-36.