KABUL, AFGHANISTAN – Afghanistan’s first private business incubator, Startup Valley, has graduated its second group of 22 female entrepreneurs. The new graduates are now set to take their business concepts to market. For five months, the course, administered by AGHAEZ Professional Services and supported by USAID: Promote Women in the Economy (WIE), trained, mentored, and provided networking and learning opportunities for the young entrepreneurs. They interacted with other Startup Valley beneficiaries who have already navigated the startup and launch processes.
“Young entrepreneurs are the future of the country and are at the forefront of economic development and sustainability in Afghanistan. We congratulate the hard work and entrepreneurial vision of these young women,” said Susan DeCamp, Director of USAID’s Gender Office.
The new business concepts range from a computer education center for the hearing impaired, organic jam production, to quail farming. Startup Valley and WIE will continue to provide six months of follow-up advisory and technical support.
“Nurturing entrepreneurial mindset in youth will change the narrative about Afghanistan, as our new generation thinks about advancing the Afghan economy through innovation and social enterprise ventures,” said Ahmad Fahim Didar, Executive Director of AGHAEZ Professional Services.
USAID Promote: Women in the Economy (WIE) is a four-year program that assists women-owned businesses or those employing women to perform better, increase income growth, and provide business sustainability. WIE also supports Afghan women in finding new or better jobs through career counseling and workplace skills development.