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Jul 4, 2019

BELTRAIDE’s Inaugural Female Entrepreneurship Class Graduates

The Belize Trade and Investment Development Service, with the support from the Regional Center of Promotion for MSME, closed its first Female Entrepreneurship Programme with a graduation ceremony today in Belize City. The goal is to improve and strengthen women’s leadership skills, economic empowerment, and business development skills. The participants represent the spa and wellness, creative industry, Business Process Outsourcing, and agro-processing industries.  Reporter Andrea Polanco has more from today’s graduation ceremony.


Andrea Polanco, Reporting

Thirteen women graduated from BELTRAIDE’s inaugural Female Entrepreneurship programme. The participants learnt a number of social skills to help them develop their businesses. Monique Usher of the SBDC says that since March of this year the participants have attended a number of sessions.


Monique Usher

Monique Usher, Acting Manager, SBDC Belize

“We have done a series of transfer of workshops in areas such as business model development, looking at conflict resolution, financial management and different areas that we believe are essential in the operation of a business. So, they have been able to participate in those workshops, in addition to other networking activities that are beneficial to having them scale up their business.  And so what we have seen is that some of the women have pivoted their business model and concept and have also been able to identify their customer segment. We have also seen that they have made increases in sales; they have expanded their networks and they have also been able to secure additional or new buyers for their respective services or products that they are offering.”


Mobile hairdresser Fidelis Gentle and professional translator Katia Hoare are two small business owners who completed the programme.


Fidelis Gentle

Fidelis Gentle, Graduate, Female Entrepreneurship

“I learnt a lot of stuff. I mean some of it was stressful and tiring; a headache. But I got through the process. I learnt stuff like business management and conflict resolution. The day after my conflict resolution I had a confrontation with my boyfriend’s employee and it really worked out. I could have reacted in a different manner but I looked at the person and tell ah that I took a six months course for this and I will deal with ah differently. So, I explained what the person did wrong and what they were supposed to do. So, it really worked out for me.”


Katia Hoare, Graduate, Female Entrepreneurship

“This has been amazing. This has been rewarding, sharing with these ladies has been indescribable. I am so thankful and I leave this programme with a stronger vision for my business. I know where I want to go. I have stronger objectives, stronger goals. I am simply amazed by what BELTRAIDE is doing.”


Katia Hoare

Andrea Polanco

“What is perhaps one thing that you know you will definitely apply to your business?”


Katia Hoare

“Definitely the customer discovery; going out finding who my true customer is; having that relation with my client is very important for me.”


The thirteen graduates are all clients of the S.B.D.C. and as a result of that they will receive business support.

Monique Usher

“The women of this programme today are clients of SBDC, so they will receive additional business advisory services from the SBDC. Part of the course also included business advisory, so we paired them with a business advisor and that person will be assisting them beyond the scope of the female entrepreneurship programme.”


Reporting for News Five, I’m Andrea Polanco.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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