Request for Proposal

Subject: Training services to support the implementation of professional training for an organisation working with migrant women and migrant women entrepreneurs 

General Introduction: Training services will be organised in the framework of the ATHENA Project – Approaches To valorisethe High EntrepreneuriAl potential of migrant women. The objective of the ATHENA project is to contribute to the economic and social integration of migrant women in the EU society by improving the services of entrepreneurship support to migrant women and creating a specific entrepreneurial path for them in the regional contexts where the project activities are developed.  

Needs

Two different trainings will be organised by the Digital Leadership Institute (DLI), within the context of the ATHENA Project: 

1. Training for professionals working with migrant women: The objective of this training is to improve the services provided by the public or private organizations to migrant women on entrepreneurship. The aim is to build capacities of organizations professionals working with migrant women, with additional ad hoc knowledge that will help and better equip them to deliver the services of support for migrant women on entrepreneurship path. The professionals from the organizations working with entrepreneurs will be trained in the different topics that have been identified as missing or weak by the needs and demands of the migrant women. The topics are: Administrative and legal issues, access to finance, psychological preparedness of a migrant women, cultural diversity and sensitivity. DLI is looking for an organisation or independent professional who can provide a lecture on one or more of the above-mentioned topics.  The training for professionals working with migrant women will last half a day. 

2. Training for migrant women: The objective of this bootcamp is to provide (migrant) women with the skills, resources and access to expertise necessary to inspire them to take up entrepreneurship. The overall aim is to contribute to the economic and social integration of migrant women in the EU society by improving the services of entrepreneurship support oriented to migrant women and accompanying them on the challenging entrepreneurial path. 

Each training will address three sections, each providing a specific set of skills: Legal skills, business skills, digital skills.

  • Legal skills: Administrative and legal overview, access to finance/ Belgian founding schemes, cultural diversity in the business environment. 
  • Business skills: Vision & mission identification, Business design, strategic planning
  • Digital Skills: Digital tools to manage your accounting, building an e-commerce website.

The bootcamp will last three half-days. 

Requirements

Training for professionals working with migrant women – four independent sessions are foreseen under the following topics: 

1. Administrative and legal advice: the aim is to give an overview of the administrative and legal requirements the migrant women wishing to become entrepreneurs need to go undergo. This advice is to to make it easier to deal with the administrative requirements to start/run a business. Suggested length of the session is 1h.

2. Access to finance: Part of setting up and running a business requires dealing with legal questions such as registering the enterprise, obtaining permits, filling out tax reports and others. For a migrant who has no previous experience in the area and is also not used to the administrative system and institutions in the host country, this might be a significant obstacle and a migrant entrepreneur may face greater difficulties than a native counterpart in navigating regulations and administrative red tape. Migrant entrepreneurs may also need specific advice regarding immigration regulations (for example concerning permit renewal and status change). It consists of direct provision of loans and other (micro) credit instruments, provision of facilities where starting the business, or support with the application process to obtain a loan from another institution. Suggested length of the session is 1h. 

3. Psychological preparedness of a migrant women Migrant workers show an increase in the incidence of serious, psychotic, anxiety, and post-traumatic disorders due to a series of socio-environmental variables, such as loss of social status, discrimination, and separations from the family. This causes low life conditions, which is also due to marginalization from the social context and strenuous work. It is therefore essential to increase knowledge among professionals working with migrants about this issue and promote wellbeing for this vulnerable job category.Suggested length of the session is 30 to 40 min.

4. Cultural sensitivity in business:   Migrants often lack familiarity with the (business) environment and the market where they start the business. Similar is true to the professionals working with migrants that not always are prepared to deal with diversities. Cultural sensitivity training may help to understand what is acceptable and unacceptable behavior toward people based on their race, ethnicity, age, gender, religion, or sexual orientation. This can help to avoid situations leading to discrimination, harassment, and retaliation. Suggested length of the session is 30 to 40 min.

Training for migrant women: The bootcamp will be divided in three independent sections, each providing a specific set of topics/skills:

1. Legal skills: the aim is to provide all the information a migrant woman needs in order to set up and run a business in Belgium: 

  • Administrative and legal overview – the aim is to give an overview of the administrative and legal requirements the migrant women wishing to become entrepreneurs need to go undergo. This advice is to make it easier to deal with the administrative requirements to start/run a business. Suggested length of the session is 1h.
  • Access to finance/ Belgian founding schemes; Part of setting up and running a business requires dealing with legal questions such as registering the enterprise, obtaining permits, filling out tax reports and others. For a migrant who has no previous experience in the area and is also not used to the administrative system and institutions in the host country, this might be a significant obstacle and a migrant entrepreneur may face greater difficulties than a native counterpart in navigating regulations and administrative red tape. Migrant entrepreneurs may also need specific advice regarding immigration regulations (for example concerning permit renewal and status change). It consists of direct provision of loans and other (micro) credit instruments, provision of facilities where starting the business, or support with the application process to obtain a loan from another institution. Suggested length of the session is 1h.
  • Intercultural diversity in the business environment – Migrants often lack familiarity with the (business) environment and the market where they start the business. Cultural sensitivity training may help to understand what is acceptable and unacceptable behavior toward people based on their race, ethnicity, age, gender, religion, or sexual orientation. Suggested length of the session is 1h to 1h30.

2. Business skills: This set of supporting measures consists of training on matters that are related to starting and conducting a business. When they have no pre-migration business experience, or they do not have previous business training, migrant entrepreneurs often need to improve their business skills. Group business support normally consist of training sessions to develop a set of those skills, such as how to develop a business plan, accountancy skills, and marketing strategies, vision & mission identification, product identification, business design, strategic planningSuggested length of the session 4h.

3. Digital Skills: The aim is to provide and teach how to use different digital tools that can help to set up and run a business. These can include the following:

  • How to manage the accounting by using different digital tools. Suggested session length 1h to 1h30.
  • How to build an e-commerce website. Suggested session length 1h to 1h30. 
  • Digital marketing by using specific tech tools. Suggested session length 1h to 1h30.

The trainings will be carried out in English, but the trainer will be asked to share the training material in advance so that this can be translated in the participants languages by DLI.

Timing: The training for professionals will be carried out in person in Brussels on 24 May 2022, from 2 pm to 6 pm CET. The training for migrant women will be carried out in person in Brussels on 17, 18 & 19 June 2022, from 9am to 1 pm CET.

How to Respond: Any organisation or independent professional can propose to deliver one or more of the noted sessions. The service will be remunerated per the proposed offering and based on mutually agreed terms.

To submit a proposal, please send a document in PDF format, maximum five single-spaced A4 pages, plus Annexes (CVs, past project experiences, draft curricula, etc.) which includes: 

  • Target training session(s)
  • Description of the proposed training, including topics to be covered in the session;
  • Price, including time (quoted in person days) and materials, plus VAT, and validity term;
  • Confirmation of availability for training dates; and
  • Background information for the contracting person/organisation, including name, legal address, VAT number, etc.
  • Annex: ZIP file including CV/Bio of expert/s, previous project experience, references, etc.

Each Proposal with Annex should be sent to the following email address: dliiorg(at)gmail(dot)com

Deadline for proposal submission is 10 May 2022 at midnight CET.

Moving Forward Support for Women Entrepreneurs

Women-led entrepreneurship can act as an enabler of women’s economic empowerment and gender equality and contribute to the post-COVID economic recovery.

On this important topic, DLI and it’s partners organized an event entitled Moving Forward Support for Women Entrepreneurs on 16 March 2022 at the Residence Palace in Brussels.  The event was hybrid, which supported people to attend from a large variety of countries and organisations.

Moving Forward Support for Women Entrepreneurs was organised in the framework of the Move It Forward Plus project (MIF+), an Erasmus Plus-funded project to support organizations working in the field of female digital entrepreneurship by equipping them with tools and strategies to better support aspiring women entrepreneurs. The highlighted “tool” was the Move It Forward female digital starters weekend, a two-day program with the aim of bringing together teen and adult women to provide them with the digital skills, resources and access to expertise necessary to inspire them to take up digital entrepreneurship.

During the event, speakers highlighted the importance of supporting women-led entrepreneurship from different angles and perspectives.  

First, Cheryl Miller, DLI Director and Co-head of EU Delegation to the G20 / Women20, dug into why it is important to support women entrepreneurs and what is at stake if this is not done.

The project coordinator, Marina Andrieu from WIDE(Luxembourg) then presented tools and methodologies developed in the MIF + project, and how they can be applied and used for training and mentoring of future digital entrepreneurs. 

Next, MIF+ partner organisations, Fundatia Professional (Romania), Led by Her (France), WIDE (Luxembourg), and CTK Rijeka (Croatia), described the specific actions they implemented to support women entrepreneurs and the impact this had in their local communities.

In the final and most heart-warming part of the event, three future women entrepreneurs who are currently enrolled in the MIF+ mentoring program, shared their experiences of why and how they started on their entrepreneurship journey. In each case, they underscored the fact that getting support to develop their project idea—first during the MIF digital starters weekend and afterwards with guidance from a mentor—is what has permitted them to start making their entrepreneurship dreams come true.

“COGE” Gender Equality Contest for Young People Launched

On 21 March 2022, the R&I PEERS project announced the “COGE: Contest on Gender Equality” competition, inviting young people between the ages of 18 and 25 who are studying in Belgium, Cyprus, Greece, Italy, Israel, Slovenia, Spain or Tunisia, to submit a video of up to three minutes long describing their experiences, knowledge, perception and proposals for Gender Equality.

Information about the competition—including application form, rules for participation, and contact—is available online at the following link: https://ec.europa.eu/eusurvey/runner/COGE

Deadline for submitting completed videos: Midnight 31 May 2022 Central European Time

The R&I PEERS project partners include the Digital Leadership Institute of Belgium, the Greek General Secretariat for Demographic and Family Policy and Gender Equality, the Confindustria association, and seven Universities and Research Institutions from Europe and the Mediterranean. The project is coordinated by the University of Salerno in Italy.

The project “Pilot Experiences for Improving Gender Equality in Research Organizations – R&I PEERS” has been funded under the HORIZON 2020 program (GA 788171) and aims to create and evaluate pilot experiences from a gender perspective which do not limit the participation and career of women in Research and Innovation.

Organise Your Own Move It Forward Event!

As an outcome of the Move It Forward+ project, funded by the European Union Erasmus+ program, a toolkit for organising your very own Move It Forward (“MIF”) event–as well as CSR and mentoring activities to promote women (digital) entrepreneurs–is now available free, online for the public!

Move It Forward is an event footprint–sometimes called a “hackathon” or “tech-for-good” initiative–originally developed by the Digital Leadership Institute as part of its inQube “female digital accelerator” program. With MIF and other activities, inQube aims to support teen and adult women entrepreneurs by providing community, digital and business skills, and other resources they need to launch and grow successful digitally-enabled and digitally-driven enterprises.

Including Move It Forward+ project activities, the Move It Forward event has been organized 20 times in 9 countries in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, reaching thousands of participants, since 2014. In 2018, MIF received a Global Mobile Award, and in 2019 was recognised as European finalist for the UN ITU EQUALS in Tech Award.

Materials developed and made available within the MIF+ project are available for download on the Move It Forward+ website and below.

Please feel free to contact us for more information about and support with organising a Move It Forward event in your own city!

1. Guides: How to organise a Move it forward+ Event

We provide our Guides in 5 different languages, to support you with the organisation of your Move it forward+ event.

2. Event Preparation Documents

You can find additional and printable materials here:

3. In-event Documents

You can find a variety of printable material here:

4. Guides: How to organise mentoring sessions

You will find here all the resources related to the organisation of mentoring sessions linked to your Move it foward+ event.

Annexe n°1: Impact and assessment of women programmes and events supporting women in entrepreneurship.

Annexe n°2: Mentor’s portfolio & Mentee’s portfolio

5. Event Presentations

Our Event Presentation will be available soon!

Women4Afghanistan

The recent withdrawal of the United States from Afghanistan after twenty years of occupation created a power vacuum and resurgence of domestic forces that has triggered a humanitarian crisis.  The clamping down on human rights and freedoms, especially impacting girls and women, is forcing flight of hundreds of thousands of Afghan nationals to other parts of the globe. Some of the most high profile evacuations have been of the Afghan Girls Robotics and Girls Soccer teams. There are thousands of harrowing evacuation stories, not all of which have been successful, and countless more at-risk girls and women are still living in uncertainty in Afghanistan. 

In her role as Head of EU Delegation to the G20 Women20 stakeholder interest group, Cheryl Miller, DLI Director, played an instrumental role in delivering a Declaration of Support for Afghan Women and Girls to G20 leaders, including EC President von der Leyen and US President Biden, ahead of a 24 August urgent G7 meeting on Afghanistan. President von der Leyen’s remarks there focused on the plight of Afghan girls and women: “We need to help mostly those who are at immediate risk. And those are women, girls and children, who make up the vast majority of internally displaced people – 80% of the internally displaced people in Afghanistan are women and girls.”

As Afghan refugees attempt to make their way to other countries, they will need support – for evacuating from Afghanistan, arriving to a new location, and in assimilating long-term as economic, political and social actors in their adopted homes. An initiative called Women4Afghanistan was launched by Anne Ravanona and Katharina Miller, EU delegates to the G20/W20, in order to rally support for Afghan girls and women on this path.  More information on how to contribute to this critical work may be found here: 

http://www.women4afghanistan.org/

As Afghan refugees arrive and begin the process of integrating into their new home communities, it will be up to programs like AMIF and the ATHENA project to specifically support Afghan women and their sister refugees from around the world, by delivering on its remit to promote entrepreneurship by women migrants. DLI and the ATHENA partners look forward to the opportunity to support the women and girls of Afghanistan, and women migrants from all over the world, in integrating and achieving financial independence for these most vulnerable. 

DLI and Partners Launch WE4Change Project

On 22 March 2021, the Digital Leadership Institute and four partner organizations from across Europe launched the WE4Change initiative supporting “girls and women connecting for environmental change.” WE4Change is an EU-funded project aiming to foster civic engagement of girls and young women from disadvantaged backgrounds by empowering them to understand their strengths, develop digital, leadership and changemaking skills, and increase their sense of initiative in the social and environmental sector.

For the next two years, Digital Leadership Institute (BE), Stimmuli for Social Change (GR), Empow’Her (FR), Tekedu (MD) and ZERO Associação Sistema Terrestre Sustentável (PT) will work together to offer an innovative combination of hands-on activities, training on digital, innovation and environmental awareness skills, problem-solving and co-creation of prototypes to address climate change, responding directly to the needs of young women to break down stereotypes, develop their creativity and confidence, and contribute to society.

The first project meeting took place on the 23rd of March 2021, with project partners discussing the first project phase aiming at setting a solid and appropriate foundation for the development of the We4Change project. The first steps include a context specific gender analysis that will be conducted in each participating country looking at i) youth policy & youth participation programmes, ii) environment & climate, iii) digitalization and innovation related to the issues tackled by the project to ensure the appropriate development of the trainings and materials to be developed throughout the project.

To stay updated on the WE4Change initiative, follow the project Facebook page!

DLI Announces New EU Projects

DLI and partners of the ATHENA consortium have been awarded program funding from the EU Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund (AMIF) in order to support women of migrant backgrounds across Europe to take up entrepreneurship. Partners to the ATHENA (“Approaches To valorise the High ENtrepreneuriAl potential of migrant women”) project, which will launch in January 2021, include the following:

DLI has also been awarded Erasmus+ funding to lead the WE4Change (“Girls and Women connecting for environmental change”) project, with the mission of increasing entrepreneurship in STEM fields by girls and women through climate change activism. Members of the WE4Change project include the following organisations:

The DLI team is excited to take up these new projects that support our mission to increase entrepreneurship by girls and women, especially in science and technology fields, in 2021!

Women Power Code Skills Week

The Women Power Code project aims to celebrate the art of creating with code, to motivate young and adult women to start developing tech skills, and to connect individuals with organisations keen to support women in the digital society. In order to showcase achievements in the project, WPC partners from across Europe are organising Women Power Code Skills Week, a series of events addressing disruptive technologies and career opportunities arising in the tech sector. Join us for interesting discussions and practical workshops by registering at the links below, and join the Women Power Code Social Learning Community to meet like-minded peers.

14 July 18:00 CEST: Introduction to the Internet of Things: ”Build your first mobile app” – online workshop organised by Digital Leadership Institute in collaboration with CIVIC. Exploring the Internet of Things, this online workshop will focus on practical skills as we will be creating our first mobile app with MIT App Inventor.

16 July 18:00 CEST: Introduction to 3D Printing: ”Design your first 3D object” – online workshop organised by Digital Leadership Institute. Examining development of the 3D printing market in recent years, during this workshop we will learn the first steps to create a 3D object and discuss the opportunities for developing new skills and competences in this field. 

21 July 18:00 CEST: Women Power Code Final Conference: ”New skills for the digital age” – online conference organised by the Digital Leadership Institute. During this event, we will discuss the results of the Women Power Code project, focusing on the most relevant skills for the digital age and opportunities in technological fields for women who want to enter or shift to digital careers.

We look forward to welcoming you at these exciting events taking place as part of Women Power Code Skills Week!

Women Power Code Project Launches

Studies on women active in Information Technology  unveil that a greater presence of women in the area would benefit the industry, women themselves and Europe’s economy. A change in policy is needed, particularly due to an alarming drop in female ICT graduates and the limited presence of women in the STEM area (science, technology, engineering and math) reflecting thus the gender gap acknowledged in the ICT sector.

The Women Power Code project aims to educate adult women over forty years of age to understand and learn coding in order to improve their everyday life through the use of the Internet of Things. It is never too late to acquire knowledge, skills and competences in any branch of education.

Women Power Code is a three year project targeting adult women who want new challenges and seek to acquire digital skills, literacy and numeracy. The project partners are:

  • CIVIC – UK, project leader;
  • EUROCREA MERCHANT – Italy;
  • BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT FRIESLAND – Netherlands;
  • DIGITAL LEADERSHIP INSTITUTE – Belgium;
  • DANIEL SG LTD – Bulgaria;
  • BIOANIM – Slovenia;
  • North-East ADR (via Regional Center for North-East Studies).

The project will equip beneficiaries with new digital competences and will pave the way for a smooth start in understanding how to improve their everyday life by incorporating these skills. In this way, the project aims to allow women with low digital literacy to adapt and better meet the challenges posed by the use of new technologies at work, and to also help balance gender inequality in this area.

For more information and updates please visit the project website.

DLI Update – November-December 2017

The DLI Board and Executive Team are actively involved in initiatives with partners and stakeholders around the world that promote ESTEAM* leadership by girls and women.  Find out below about our work in November and December 2017, learn here about future activities in which we are involved, and visit our calendar for upcoming events organised by DLI.

*entrepreneurship, science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics


9 November – Women Techmakers “Telling Our Story” (Las Palmas, Grand Canaries): On 9 November in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, DLI Founder Ms. Cheryl Miller provided a keynote presentation as part of the Women Techmakers “Telling Our Story” event at Centro Demostrador TIC – Recinto Ferial.


9 November – Second Meeting of the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition Governing Board (Brussels): DLI Founder Ms. Cheryl Miller  contributed to the second meeting of the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition Governing Board on 9 November in Brussels, in preparation for the 7 December Digital Skills and Jobs Conference.


10-12 November – LOOP Summit for Music Makers (Berlin): 10-12 November in Berlin, DLI Founder Ms. Cheryl Miller  joined the LOOP Summit for Music Makers taking place at Funkhaus in Berlin.


15 November – Entrepreneurship Forum (Brussels): On 15 November, DLI Founder Ms. Cheryl Miller contributed to an entrepreneurship showcase for students at Institut Cardinal Mercier in Schaerbeek, organized by 100.000 Entrepreneurs Belgium.


15 November – Digital Capital CODE FIESTA (Brussels): On 15 November at ‘De Kelders van Kuregem’ in Brussels, DLI contributed to the Digital Capital CODE FIESTA hosted by MAKS, with an intervention by Digital Muse After School, led by DLI Digital Creative Officer Ms. Valentina Calà.


16 November – Digital Muse at Westonbirt Schools Careers Day (Westonbirt): “Look to the future event”: career event for youngsters at Westonbirt (UK). Mai Ensmann, DLI Development Officer,  attended the event, presenting the ESTEAM career possibilities to young girls.


19 November – Hacktivate the City! Generation Z: (Brussels) DLI director Ms. Katja Legisa  joined the opening of the exhibition “Generation Z,” where finalists of our recent Move It Forward with Women in a Music were showcased and MIF project M.ES.S. won top honours from the Generation Z jury!


20-21 November – Third Annual Colloquium on Fundamental Rights (Brussels): On 20-21 November, Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Founder, joined the third annual Colloquium on Fundamental Rights, on the subject of “women’s rights in turbulent times,” hosted by the European Commission DG for Justice at Palais d’Egmont in Brussels.


22 November – Innovation in Women’s Digital Entrepreneurship: On 22 November at a Women’s Entrepreneurship Platform event on “Innovation in Women’s Digital Entrepreneurship” at the European Parliament in Brussels, Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Founder,  provided a keynote presentation in celebration of Women’s Entrepreneurship Day and Global Entrepreneurship Week.


23 November – Girls Go IT Annual Forum (Moldova): Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Founder,  provided a keynote presentation for the 2017 Girls Go IT Annual Forum taking place in Chisinau, Moldova, on 23 November.


28 November – Think Digital.eu (Brussels): Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Founder,  moderated a panel on “Data Protection & Privacy” as part of the annual Think Digital event, taking place at Palais d’Egmont on 28 November in Brussels.


30 November – Chatham House Report Release (London): On 30 November in London, Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Founder,  joined the Chatham House release of “Private Sector Engagement with Women’s Economic Empowerment: Lessons from Years of Practice,” a report authored by Linda Scott, Emeritus DP World Chair for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, University of Oxford, based on research with the Global Business Coalition for Women’s Economic Empowerment (GBC for WEE).


5 December – The Role of Lifelong Learning for Women Entrepreneurs (Brussels): On 5 December, Ms. Katja Legisa, DLI board member,  joined a panel discussion on “the Role of Lifelong Learning for Women Entrepreneurs” as part of a Women’s Entrepreneurship Platform event at the European Parliament in Brussels.


5 December – “Women in the Digital Age” Taskforce Briefing (London): On 5 December in London, Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Founder,  joined a Chatham House meeting to launch a global taskforce on “Women in the Digital Age” as part of the 2018 G20 meeting in Argentina.


7 December – Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition Conference (Brussels): On 7 December in Brussels, Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Founder,  joined the members of the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition Governing Board for a meeting with Commissioner for the Digital Single Market, Ms. Mariya Gabriel, in the context of the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition Conference on the topic of “Digital Opportunities for Europe”. Ms. Miller also awarded the 2018 EU Digital Skills Award for “Digital Skills for All,” and DLI hosted a booth with two digital workshops on professional portraits and on-line CV tools.


9-10 December – Smart Family Hackathon (Brussels): As partner to the Women In Tech Platform in Brussels, Ms. Valentina Cala, DLI Digital Creative Officer,  and Ms. Mai Ensmann, DLI Development Officer, supported a two-day hackathon to create smart solutions for the entire family, that took place on 9-10 December at DigiYser in Brussels.


12 December – European Commission Briefing on Women in the Digital Age (Brussels): Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Founder,  joined a 12 December meeting at the European Commission to review the forthcoming update of the 2013 report on “women active in the ICT sector .


12 December – NOVA XX Women in Innovation Panel (Brussels): As part of NOVA XX, the first international competition on women in technological, scientific and artistic innovation, Ms. Valentina Càla, DLI Digital Creative Officer,  contributed to a 12 December panel on “Women in Innovation” in Brussels.


13 December – NOVA XX Women in the 4th Industrial Revolution Panel (Brussels): As part of NOVA XX, Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Founder,  contributed to a 13 December roundtable on “Women in the 4th Industrial Revolution” at the BOZAR in Brussels.


Be sure to visit our Calendar, Upcoming Activities page, and sign up for the DLI Newsletter in order to keep up with DLI events and activities!

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