Who implements AWE around the world?
U.S. Embassies and Consulates around the world coordinate implementation, including identifying partners, facilitators, mentors, and participants. Public and private-sector partner organizations support, supplement, and localize the AWE experience by providing networks and enrichment opportunities.
How many countries are implementing AWE?
Currently, AWE operates in more than 50 countries. View a list of participating countries here.
What are the key objectives of AWE?
- Provide resources for women to engage in U.S-style online education with guided facilitation and localization from ECA alumni, local women business leaders, or other local partners.
- Foster partnerships that support AWE participants’ access to peer-to-peer mentorship, business partners, and scaling opportunities with businesses in the region and in the United States.
- Enable access to a wide range of on-going programs tailored to women’s economic empowerment to expand the effects of AWE participation.
What United States policy priority does AWE support?
AWE supports the White House-led Women’s Global Development and Prosperity (W-GDP) initiative, maximizing the number of opportunities available for women to fulfill their economic potential. Specifically, AWE supports Pillar 2: Increase the access of women entrepreneurs and business owners to financing, market opportunities, and training to establish and grow their businesses.
How can my company get involved?
The U.S. Department of State believes investing in women’s economic empowerment is more important than ever before! We continue to see an increase in demand for these entrepreneurial services. If you are interested in championing women so that they can participate more fully in our global economy, please email our team at AWEinPD@state.gov.
What makes AWE different from DreamBuilder?
There are a few components that differentiate AWE from DreamBuilder:
- AWE is a facilitated experience. The key is that facilitators localize the basic principles within each DreamBuilder module and illustrate the concepts with relevant examples and additional engagements. For the course itself, and by extension the participants, there is the option of completing the course individually or as a group.
- AWE facilitators are specialized and must participate in an AWE Facilitator Training. Because of the kind of experience we are trying to curate with AWE, it is crucial that facilitators have the ability to share, learn, and continue tailoring implementation to meet the needs of their unique target audience.
- An AWE cohort must meet in-person or virtually on a regular basis and should include around 30 women. People learn better in a nurturing, supportive environment. Coordinated in-person meetings allow each cohort to develop networks of support and mutual interest. As the world navigates the COVID-19 pandemic, virtual alternatives are being developed in real time to continue engagement. You have the option of implementing multiple cohorts in various places and/or in one place to extend reach, depending on various partnership models and operating costs.
- AWE includes additional engagements to significantly enhance the experience. DreamBuilder does not include country-specific topics, such as registering a business and paying taxes. In addition, there may be skills (public speaking, digital marketing, etc.) or networks (Chambers of Commerce, business leaders, etc.) that would be of use to AWE participants and opportunities such as visits to local businesses, special guest speakers, and pitch competitions to facilitate. We encourage Posts to be mindful and creative in incorporating these types of opportunities into their curated AWE model.
For people not participating in AWE but interested in DreamBuilder, you can access the free course on www.dreambuilder.org.
Is AWE only for women?
AWE is specifically designed for women taking part in a facilitated experience hosted by U.S Embassies and Consulates participating in AWE.
I don’t have an existing business, but am interested in starting one. Is AWE right for me?
AWE will help you start your own business journey and collaborate with like-minded women entrepreneurs.
What languages is AWE offered?
The foundational educational component, DreamBuilder, is available in both English and Spanish.
Is there an age limit for applicants?
There is no age limit to participate in AWE, however selection criteria varies by country.
How can I participate in my country?
AWE is a tailored educational opportunity that is organized by Public Diplomacy Sections in U.S. Embassies overseas that design and implement their own AWE model based on local conditions, contacts, networks, and needs. Depending on local operating environments in each country, options to participate may vary significantly. Please get in touch with the U.S. Embassy or consulate to learn more about AWE. You can also reach out to AWEinPD@state.gov.
Is there an application process?
Participation in AWE is merit-based. Eligibility criteria will vary by program and by country. Candidates are selected based on a variety of factors, that may include (but are not limited to) education levels, business feasibility, personal leadership ability, and available funds.