Business women in the Caribbean are all about helping each other. It’s not easy for them to get funding, so two successful business women have decided to “pay it forward” by creating FundRiseHER – a $1 million crowdfunding campaign to help other women start their own businesses.
Why it’s so hard to get funding
Most women entrepreneurs in the Caribbean fund their businesses the old fashioned way — they seek help from family and friends. They are often brushed off by local lending institutions when it comes to funding. This was the experience of Valerie Grant who got the brush off by a bank in Jamaica, even after she just landed a huge government contract.
So, Grant and her friend Cecile Watson, also an entrepreneur, launched FundRiseHER to raise $1 million to help at least 50 women entrepreneurs from at least 10 different Caribbean countries to start their own businesses.
Helping 44% of the world’s poorest women
Arif Zaman, executive director of the Commonwealth Businesswomen’s Network, stated that “forty-four percent of the world’s poorest women live in these Commonwealth countries.” The FundRiseHer campaign hopes to raise matching funds from donors that will provide more entrepreneurship opportunities for women in the Caribbean region and in the Commonwealth.
Countries in the Caribbean include Jamaica, Bahamas, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Grenada, Aruba, Cayman Islands, and many more.