Women’s Entrepreneurship Initiative (WEI) and Operation HOPE Join to Empower Aspiring Women Business Owners with Training Curriculum
Mayor’s Office of Communications
55 Trinity Avenue, Suite 2500 • Atlanta, Georgia 30303
Jenna Garland, Press Secretary
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 9, 2015
Women’s Entrepreneurship Initiative and Operation HOPE Join to Empower Aspiring Women Business Owners with Training Curriculum
The 12-week program will provide instructor-led courses designed for women
seeking to start their own businesses
ATLANTA – The City of Atlanta announced today that the Women’s Entrepreneurship Initiative (WEI), in partnership with global financial empowerment leader, Operation HOPE, are joining together to equip aspiring women entrepreneurs with educational tools to jumpstart their business goals.
Recognizing the need to fortify Atlanta’s rapidly growing community of women entrepreneurs with resources for the early stages of entrepreneurship, the two organizations will collaborate to offer a training program to Atlanta-area women interested in starting their own businesses. Using the success of Operation HOPE’s Project 5117 Entrepreneurial Development Training Program, participants can partake in an instructor-led, 12-week training course. This program is designed to address specific areas of opportunity for business plan improvement and business model refinement. Enrollees also receive consultative guidance to help them realize their business goals.
Operation HOPE and WEI signed an official Memorandum of Understanding formalizing the partnership earlier in the summer, and are now preparing to extend complimentary enrollment to women business owners in Atlanta, including applicants to the 2015 WEI Incubator competition.
“This partnership reflects our mutual organizations’ commitment to providing aspiring woman entrepreneurs in our community with the resources they need today, to start and grow their businesses tomorrow,”said Theia Washington, Executive Director of WEI. “This invaluable partnership with Operation HOPE will enable the next wave of aspiring women entrepreneurs to pursue their business goals with the critical knowledge and insight they need for longevity and success.”
A vision of Mayor Kasim Reed, and advised by a seven-member advisory board chaired by Home Depot’s Chief Financial Officer, Carol Tomé, WEI aims to synergize entrepreneurial opportunities for women in Atlanta, with the City’s mission of elevating and strengthening its economic development efforts. Through a competitive process, fifteen women entrepreneurs will be selected to participate in an inaugural fifteen-month business incubator - a collaborative office environment designed to foster business growth and sustainability.
“We are pleased to partner on this important issue with the City of Atlanta for the Women’s Entrepreneurship Initiative (WEI),” said Louis Negrón, President, Atlanta Market Region at Operation HOPE. "Helping women develop their entrepreneurship skills and translate vision into action not only empowers the women in the program, but their success helps strengthen economic stability and opportunity in communities where they reside.”
The Entrepreneurial Development Program will begin early 2016 and culminate with a graduation ceremony at the end of the 12 week curriculum. Details for enrollment are available on both organizations’ websites. To learn more about Operation HOPE and WEI, please visit www.operationhope.org and www.weiatlanta.com.
About Operation HOPE, Inc.
In 2015, Operation HOPE received a 4-star charity for transparency and accountability by the prestigious nonprofit evaluator, Charity Navigator, establishing it as a best-in-class organization. Since 1992, Operation HOPE has promoted financial dignity through financial literacy and educational tools in underserved communities. Through its core portfolios, the organization has provided youth and adult financial literacy, encouraged economic preparedness and digital empowerment, promoted homeownership, and assisted with foreclosure prevention to more than 2.5 million individuals, families, and small-business owners. It is currently focused on Project 5117, a multi-year initiative that will track and increase business role models for youth, boost credit scores for adults, and empower underserved communities, as a part of its “silver rights” mission to make free enterprise work for everyone.
For more information about the City of Atlanta, please visit http://www.atlantaga.gov or watch City Channel 26. Follow the City of Atlanta on Facebook and Twitter @CityofAtlanta. Follow Mayor Reed on Facebook and Twitter @Kasim Reed