The program was inspired by Facebook’s long-term commitment to women’s economic empowerment. It was launched in 2016 on International Women’s Day to support female-owned enterprises to enter the digital economy, through digital skills training and business inspiration.
By September 2020, over 1 million women were trained across 38 markets, through a global network of 40 community partners.
Besides training them on financial management tools and business resiliency, it also offers mentorship and inspiration by organizing sessions and panels led by successful women entrepreneurs.
SheMeansBusiness has created an ecosystem of training resources and community of peers to look up to.
Women-led businesses have been disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 because they are more likely to operate micro-businesses, less likely to receive financial support, and are concentrated in sectors which were particularly impacted by lockdown measures.
Supporting women, especially in these difficult times, is essential if we want to come back from the pandemic to a more resilient, inclusive, and equal society. For that, the structural gaps in access to finance and digitization need to be reduced. We also require gender-sensitive policies and programs to ensure equal access to digital technologies and financial services.
Through SheMeansBusiness, Facebook is determined to work in collaboration with governments, international organizations, civil society organizations and the private sector towards inclusive recovery efforts to address structural barriers that affect women’s ability to succeed.
SheMeansBusiness will hold a virtual side event at UNGA on 22nd September, 2021.