Strengthening the U.S. commitment to promote gender equality through entrepreneurship in Pakistan, U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan Richard G. Olson, U.S. State Department Special Representative for Commercial and Business Affairs Scott Nathan, and Additional Secretary for the Pakistan Ministry of Commerce Rubina Ather inaugurated the Women’s Entrepreneurial Center of Resources, Education, Access, and Training for Economic Empowerment (WECREATE) in Islamabad on 13th February, 2015. The WECREATE Center, the first of its kind in the world, will advance gender equality in entrepreneurship and provide training, support, and mentorship for women entrepreneurs in Pakistan.
Addressing at the opening ceremony, Ambassador Olson said, “This center has enormous potential. It will help women overcome some of the barriers they encounter in Pakistan and develop initiatives to increase opportunities for aspiring entrepreneurs to start and grow their own businesses. It will maximize public-private partnerships to increase women’s participation in the economy and implement community-based programs to spur economic growth and innovation. The Center will offer mentor ship, classes, resource materials, and access to a network of other women entrepreneurs across the country and around the world.”
WECREATE Marketing and Communications Manager Mavra Bari stated, “The opening of the center is an opportunity to support not only new women entrepreneurs but also diverse ideas and perspectives. It will give women a space to unleash their creative potential.”
The center is held by the U.S.-Pakistan Women’s Council and sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, in partnership with StartUp Cup, TiE Islamabad, Change Mechanics, and the Hashoo Foundation. Launched by Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in September 2012, the U.S.-Pakistan Women’s Council is a public-private partnership that links U.S. and Pakistani universities, businesses, and other supporters to initiate advance economic opportunities for women in Pakistan.
WECREATE Centers are presently in development in Zambia, Kenya, Cambodia, and Vietnam, with other Centers expected in the future. For more information on the WECREATE Pakistan Center, please visit www.facebook.com/pakistanwecreate and https://twitter.com/WECREATEPak.