The Cherie Blair Foundation for Women’s mobile learning app HerVenture is the proud winner of the Empowerment of Women Gold Award at the 2020 Global CSR Awards in Vietnam. The app, which supports women entrepreneurs to access the skills, confidence and networks they need to grow their businesses, has now been available in Vietnam since 2018 thanks to funding from our partners Qualcomm® Wireless Reach™ and delivery with in-country partners WISE. Two years in, we reflect on key findings from the programme and consider the app’s future developments.
What is HerVenture?
The HerVenture app provides essential business training and support, enabling women to access skills-building information ‘on the go’. Since launching HerVenture in 2018, over 34,500 women entrepreneurs have downloaded the app across Nigeria, Kenya, Indonesia and Vietnam. The app is currently available for download in Vietnam, Indonesia, Nigeria and Kenya and, as of this month, is available on iOS as well as Android.
HerVenture features seven learning ‘tracks’ on a range of needs, including launching a business, product innovation and e-commerce, which was added recently in response to the COVID-19 crisis. Based on user input, the app suggests a personalised learning roadmap for each woman entrepreneur. Content is provided in bite-sized, easily digestible formats such as swipe-able cards, quizzes and videos. Static content can also be accessed offline. The app allows users to find and connect with each other, as well as learn about local business events.
HerVenture’s impacts on women entrepreneurs in Vietnam
Together with our local delivery partner, WISE, we reached 5,370 Vietnamese women entrepreneurs in our second year running HerVenture in Vietnam, bringing the total number of women reached through HerVenture Vietnam to nearly 10,800 since launching in 2018.
We recently conducted an external evaluation with women entrepreneurs who have used HerVenture Vietnam, which found that:
- 76% of users experienced an increased in their number of clients
- 72% saw an increase in their business revenue
- 64% saw an increase in their profit levels
- 64% felt more confident in running a business
- 60% were enabled to improve product marketing
Our infographic on the right gives a great overview of the outcomes HerVenture has had on women entrepreneurs in Vietnam who’ve used the app, and you can hear from them directly as they discuss what the app has meant for them below:
We are soon launching an eighth HerVenture learning track focused on digital marketing. This has emerged as a user priority through research carried out by the Foundation with women entrepreneurs on how COVID-19 has affected them and what their emerging needs are in response, as well as market research we recently conducted in Vietnam and Indonesia for our newly-launched WEAVE programme, of which HerVenture is a component.
WEAVE sees us scaling and developing our support for Vietnamese and, now, Indonesian women entrepreneurs. WEAVE aims to promote the economic empowerment of women in Vietnam and Indonesia through a three phased “learning journey” they can use at different stages of their businesses’ development:
- Phase 1 — HerVenture: 15,000 women entrepreneurs in Vietnam and Indonesia will begin their learning journey by downloading the HerVenture learning app.
- Phase 2 — Road to Growth, our blended learning program: 360 women will progress to Road to Growth based on participation in HerVenture and business aspirations. Road to Growth combines in-class training with a custom built, online learning course to develop the business management and investment readiness skills of women entrepreneurs. The training is supplemented with weekly chat sessions with trainers, networking events, regular meetups and exposure to business development services.
- Phase 3 — the Mentoring Women in Business Programme: 126 women who participate in Road to Growth, identified by their potential and commitment to scaling their business, will be paired with a business mentor with whom they will meet online on a regular basis for six months. Women mentees will also have access to the programme’s online global network of women entrepreneurs and subject matter experts as well as additional learning resources.
The Cherie Blair Foundation for Women is committed to long-term change for women entrepreneurs, and so we are dedicated to partnering with organisations that share our vision of a world where women thrive. We look forward to the future and seeing the great swathes of impact our programmes can have thanks to groundbreaking and ambitious partnerships.
HerVenture is highly scalable and adaptable. The Foundation is actively seeking funding partnerships to enable the app to launch in, but not limited, to Rwanda, South Africa, Ethiopia, Uganda, Ghana, Tanzania and Mozambique, with each iteration carefully adapted for a local context. Please get in touch if you would like to discuss potential partnerships!