Miami, August 5, 2021 – The Idea Center at Miami Dade College (MDC) has once again partnered with CISNEROS to launch the third Cohort of FOCUS: Mujeres Emprendedoras, a 12-week program designed for Venezuelan women entrepreneurs who are based in South Florida and are looking to validate the scalability of their early-stage business.
FOCUS will be taught in English to help participants strengthen their communications skills, ease the transition into the local entrepreneurial ecosystem and expand their market opportunities. The group will meet on Wednesdays from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m., at The Idea Center from Sep. 1 through Nov. 17.
By leveraging different methodologies, including Lean Startup, Design Thinking and Business Model Canvas, FOCUS aims to support Venezuelan women entrepreneurs improve their self-confidence when presenting their value proposition, be proficient in the process of identifying and validating their assumptions, and become more adaptable to the challenges of the market. The program targets South Florida-based bilingual Venezuelan residents who are open to feedback; are proficient in computing systems and technical applications; have existing ideas or early-stage businesses; and monthly sales of less than $5,000. Also, entrepreneurs should be able to apply $500 to their ventures as the program progresses.
In the last two years, FOCUS has helped 39 women entrepreneurs validate their business model, test their prototypes with potential customers, and challenge assumptions about their business model. They include Meraki Sweets (food), TrustWay Solutions (services) and Feppy Box (education), among others.
“We are pleased to join efforts with The Idea Center for the third consecutive year to contribute to the success of Venezuelan women entrepreneurs in Miami, as part of our continuous commitment to the empowerment of women and girls through Cisneros’ social impact initiatives. We have witnessed the confidence with which participants apply the skills acquired in FOCUS to both existing and new ventures and are excited to welcome another 20 women to this transformative experience” said Maria Ignacia Arcaya, SVP of Social Impact and Institutional Relations at CISNEROS.
The program has also inspired other initiatives and nonprofit organizations, such as Venprendedoras, the first worldwide support network for Venezuelan women entrepreneurs, launched by Mariela Briceño, an alumna from the first cohort and her partner, who followed a plan and a structure based on concepts and methodologies learned at FOCUS.