Phnom Penh (FN), Mar. 23 – The Asian Vision Institute, Woomentum, and the Harpswell Foundation, on Tuesday, virtually launched “Women Digital Entrepreneurship Programme,” according to the joint press release.

The event was attended by H.E Suos Yara, Director General of the Asian Cultural Council; Ms. Touch Socheata, South-East Asia Director of Woomentum; Dr. Alan Lightman, Founder and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Harpswell Foundation; and Dr. Chheang Vannarith, President of AVI.

The virtual launching has reached more than 3,000 people online, received over 1,500 views, and the number is still counting.
WDE is a joint programme initiated by Woomentum, the Harpswell Foundation and AVI to empower women’s digital entrepreneurship, business and social skills via policy dialogue, training, research and publication. In this 2021, the programme will kick-start with the policy dialogue, which will be participated by women entrepreneurs, policy and change makers on various topics such as women’s entrepreneurship, women’s leadership, digital transformation, gender equality and sustainable development. The dialogue will be conducted monthly via Zoom and livestreamed on the Facebook page of AVI and WDE.

In 2022, the programme will continue with the training programme which aims to provide practical skills on how to harness digital technology for the business development and to promote a trust-based community of women entrepreneurs. More importantly, starting from June 2022, the programme will also begin its research and publication on women's entrepreneurship and digital transformation to contribute to policy recommendations in these fields.
H.E Suos Yara expressed his optimism toward this initiative by emphasising the critical role that women has played in supporting both family and the society during the difficult time of COVID19.

Dr. Alan Lightman stated his strong support to include more women in digital entrepreneurship through his remark: “There are very few women at the top level of businesses. Worldwide, only 9 percent of senior management is women, so we need to increase the number of women entrepreneurs at the higher level. We also need to give them the tools to succeed, including access to digital technology, skills with digital technology and knowledge in digital world.”
In addition, Ms. Touch Socheata shared her in-depth perspective that the programme aims to bring together women from different parts of the country and the world. She said, “When we look at women and girls in the city and rural areas, there are some gaps. That is why we believe that we can use our programme to connect rural women, rural girls, women in Cambodia and women in other parts of the world.”

Dr. Chheang Vannarith addressed the rationale behind this initiative that: “Those who do not have access to technology and internet are further left behind, so the COVID-19 really exacerbates the inequality. This initiative will assist digital entrepreneurs in digitalisation by giving them certain and basic skills such as online registration, digital marketing and e-payment.”