AIRSWEEE Workshop was the most sought after program ever since it was announced in the month of December to women across Odisha. Over 90 applicant inquiries came in and 85 completed applicants were received. Given this interest the chosen 30 Mentees valued and regarded the program very much. They considered themselves quite fortunate to be part of such a well-‐planned workshop. Mentees came from 9 cities and from varied industries including agriculture, waste management, environmental, handicrafts, education etc.
All the sessions throughout the 4 days were equally welcomed, accepted and helpful to the mentees. They appreciated the content being rich and covered the wide angles of running a company.
Local policy leaders and elected officials participated in the workshop and applauded the work being led by AIRSWEEE. The State Minister of MSME and the top bureaucrat leading Odisha’s start up initiative welcomed AIRSWEEE Chairperson Seema Chaturvedi’s invitation to sign an MoU between AIRSWEEE and the State of Odisha such that the AIRSWEEE mentees work with state supported incubators and government schemes to promote women entrepreneurs in Odisha. This is an active follow up initiative that needs to be pursued.
Mentees were appreciative of the quality of mentors who handled the sessions. All the mentors who handled the topics were experts in those areas and hence they had great command over the topic. Mentees also felt their questions were duly addressed by the Mentors. Sufficient time and importance was given to each topic which ensured that all topics were covered within stipulated time.
The mentees Pre and Post Session elevator pitches were recorded and put online on a private You-tube channel, so that they can view, learn and promote it as a branding concept as and when they wish.
The Role plays were a huge hit as it brought out life and fun to learning while simultaneously helped the mentees to open up about their own personal challenges
Sessions by Local Resources person especially from the industry helped Mentees get a first-hand understanding on topics like Government schemes, Legal compliances, Funding options etc.
The overall event and arrangements were well planned. Mentees found the welcome kit with the content of the workshop given to them as very useful.
Press conference was successful as more than 30 press reporters attended and more than 20 news channels covered the event. Some of the mentees’ real time feedback was also covered in some top news papers
The US Mentors Ms.Seema Chaturvedi and Ms.Caroline Lewis met and interacted with a few women leaders of the state and discussed about the ecosystem and their way of working in the state and various other things related with women entrepreneurship.
Seema Chaturvedi & Caroline Lewis met with local business leaders at a CII Eastern India meeting which was also attended by Counselor General Katherine Hadda. CII’s leadership indicated interested in working with AIRSWEEE to scale up the program.