United Nations Institute for Training and Research - UNITAR Social Entrepreneurship Training Programme for Women Movemeback African initiative cover image


The Covid-19 pandemic has posed unprecedented challenges to people around the world, especially in the areas of public health and threatened millions of jobs and livelihood opportunities with huge socio-economic implications. The pandemic is likely to reverse much of the progress made towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) including in the Horn of Africa and further exacerbate youth unemployment, poverty, social inequality, and climate change.

Entrepreneurship and social entrepreneurship have a promising future to address issues related to socio-economic development and to build back better. By providing women with knowledge and skills in entrepreneurship, they can have an opportunity to participate and engage more meaningfully in society through developing their own initiatives and businesses (social or commercial) that are self-designed and self-led, and contribute positively to their own society.

The training programme targets eighty (80) women from Sudan, Somalia, Ethiopia, and Kenya, and guides them in developing successful entrepreneurial initiatives and solutions that will harness digital technologies to address social and economic challenges in their respective countries.

The programme is being conducted with the financial support of the Government and the People of Japan.


Participants will be selected through an open call for applications based on specific criteria including:

  • Age (between 18 and 40)
  • Geographical and sectoral representation within the country
  • Deep interest in entrepreneurship and frontier technology
  • Good oral and written English skills
  • Keen passion to learn by doing and highly motivated to succeed to provide positive impact to the society


By the end of this training, following the completion of webinars, along with e-courses, participants should be able to:

  • Evaluate (social) entrepreneurship in the context of their country’s sustainable growth and development
  • Appraise their own entrepreneurial and leadership style and motivations
  • Implement a design thinking methodology to identify and solve issues or needs through (social) entrepreneurship and innovation
  • Formulate and test each element of the business model for a (social) entrepreneurial venture
  • Lead the creation of a culture and practice of innovation at organizational level
  • Apply contemporary leadership and management practices to dynamic entrepreneurial contexts
  • Outline key elements of stakeholder identification, integration, engagement and enrolment in financing new ventures, building partnerships and the co-founding team;
  • Apply impactful communication techniques to various contexts
  • Develop a competitive strategy for their venture
  • Discuss the key components of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
  • Outline existing opportunities and challenges in regard to promoting gender equality
  • Explore how Covid-19 pandemic affected every aspect of our life and what challenges and opportunities it presented to both early stage entrepreneurs and established business leaders

About United Nations Institute for Training and Research

The United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) is a dedicated training arm of the United Nations, serving close to 55,000 beneficiaries annually by conducting close to 500 training and research activities around the world.

The Mission of UNITAR is to develop capacities to enhance global decision-making and to support country level action for shaping a better future. The Institute covers topics in the broad areas of Peace (promote peaceful, just and inclusive societies), People and social inclusion (promote people’s well-being and support equitable representation of countries in global decision-making fora), Planet, environmental protection and restoration, and climate change (Support the conservation, restoration and safeguarding of our planet for present and future generations), Prosperity through sustainable economic growth (Promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth), and Cross-fertilizing knowledge (Optimizing the use of technology and supporting coherence for the 2030 Agenda).

Centred around the beneficiaries it serves, UNITAR’s work targets two key sets of stakeholders: The delegates to the UN and others who develop intergovernmental agreements establishing global norms, policies, and programmes, and the key national change agents who turn the global agreements into action.