This past June Dell kicked off the 2nd annual Girls Track alongside the Dell Women’s Entrepreneurship Network (DWEN) Summit, a gathering and network of 500 amazing women entrepreneurs from around the world who come to learn, collaborate and meet one another. Here, we invited 20 girls from around the world to be a part of the girls track where they learned how to run and grow a business. They worked with local entrepreneurs to Cape Town and provided feedback and recommendations for the entrepreneurs based on mentoring sessions with DWEN women ranging from Skai Blue Media Founder, Rakia Reynolds to Cosmopolitan’s Special Projects Director Laura Brounstein, seen below.
Each mentor taught the girls various angles of business and gave advice on their journey in and out of business. The girls also got a chance to work with mentors who were closer to their age, including 13 year old explorer Liliana Libecki to 11- year old entrepreneur and CEO of Me and Bees Lemonade, Mikalia Ulmer. The Girls Track worked on businesses local to Cape Town, some of which took a look at sustainable ways to wash cars while others looked at how best to recycle paper and tires in Cape Town. Each girls was assigned a business that ranged from recycling to crafts, and fashion to tourism and some of our girls worked on their own ideas to create technologies that improve the lives of others. That is a big component of the Girls Track; doing good: how can you use technology to help someone, and how can you build a businesses that improves someones life. The best businesses know how to do this and they do it well. After sessions that varied from web design to marketing, 2 groups of girls got a chance to pitch the company they were working on, on the main stage, during the final ceremony to a panel of Dell executives; what we called ‘The Dolphin Tank.’
Finalist were chosen to pitch on the final stage and received Dell laptops and the entrepreneurs, whose business they pitched, received devices and a brand new website as well. Pretty Cool! But win or come in 2nd, be 30 or be 13, it’s not about age, it’s not a race, go at your own pace. It is about your calling to do good and live well while doing it. Do not be intimidated by others successes, do not be hindered by competition, focus on what you like doing and couple it with hard work, and the road is yours. Every day, it is your purpose to live and to give; how you do it is up to you. Our finalist included 2 girls from the Christel House in South Africa and 2 girls from the United States representing the following businesses: EcoD Wash and Ndibano Tours, both founded by Christel House graduates.
All our finalist and runner ups walked away with some sweet devices and every single girl in this track will go on to do amazing things because it is about what you learned. What you learned matters, because that is where the true prize lies. I wish these ladies nothing but light and greatness, but they don’t need luck; they’ve got a power that’s all their own.
Thank you to Dell and every single person who makes this opportunity possible, we love and appreciate you all. And a huge shout out to all the girls who were a part of the track, we wish you nothing but the very best ❤ For more on my trip to South Africa read here.
Photos are courtesy of Carlos Reina and the lovely team at Fit To Tweet.