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    Date submitted
  • 09-Sep-2017

MentorSHE

Abstract

MentorSHE is a mentorship and capacity building platform for women in decision-making. The programme provides young women with a one-on-one mentorship with local and international politicians, and several skill-building workshops.

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Additional Questions

Who is your customer?

MentorSHE targets young women aspiring for a career in politics, but will soon expand to women in STEM. Although non-profit, MentorSHE is run with a corporate mindset, inviting firms and institutes to "adopt a workshop" as in sponsor a capacity building workshop from the overall program. Thus, enabling firms to promote diversity, as well as ensuring MentorSHE's sustainability and neutrality.

What problem does this idea/product solve or what market need does it serve?

As of June 2016, 22.8% of the parliamentarians around the globe were women. In Lebanon, the percentage of women representation in parliament is as low as 3.1%, putting Lebanon in the last ranks in the world. Studies show that women are less likely than men to run for office/ parliament/ cabinet, less likely to win over public opinion, and more likely to quit a political career. But there are several other reasons for the drastic situation in Lebanon: Cultural barriers derived from the patriarchal society which favors men in key positions. Lack of strategies and policies that promote women leadership. Lack of women running for parliamentarian seats (on average the number of men who run for Lack of encouragement for women leadership inside the political parties. MentorSHE was created with the mission to change that.

What attributes will make this idea/product successful? Why do you believe that those features will create success?

It's primordial to provide young women with role models, and to avoid fighting bias with further bias, and to ensure a successful mission, it is equally important to engage the other gender. Thus, MentorSHE provides its candidates with mentors (politicians) from both genders. n addition to the many skill-building workshop that aren't commonly available on the market such as public policy, negotiations, campaigning, communication, etc. MentorSHE has already run 3 programs, two of which were in politics, and one on negotiations.

Explain how you (your team) will execute to make this idea/product successful? What gives you (your team) an advantage over others already in the market or new to this market?

Being an engineer and working in a field of a majority of men, I aim to showcase that women can achieve whatever they want, even in the lack of policy support, provided they have the right skills and guidance. & considering how scarce are women in politics especially in Lebanon, I wanted to apply that for women in politics as well. MentorSHE team shares that view, and believe that it's primordial that we involve both genders, hence 40% of the team are men. Additionally, we believe in re-using the talents within the network, thus, some of the current team are former candidates who are now giving-back by taking responsibility roles within the team.