African Women Entrepreneurship Cooperative (AWEC) 2021 – Cohort 4

African Women Entrepreneurship Cooperative (AWEC) 2021 – Cohort 4

Deadline: January 31, 2021

Applications are open for the African Women Entrepreneurship Cooperative (AWEC) 2021 – Cohort 4. The African Women Entrepreneurship Cooperative is an innovative 12-month, leadership and business management capacity building program that empowers 200 female entrepreneurs annually.

AWEC uses applied and collaborative learning experiences to create immediate business impact and cultivate a pan-African cooperative of entrepreneurs, experts, and allies. The program’s blended-learning model – in which most activities take place digitally – releases AWEC from the traditional confines of in-person training programs and enables AWEC to impact entrepreneurs across the continent and diaspora.


Upon successful completion of the 12-month program, Fellows will:

  • Form connections with a diverse network of African women entrepreneurs.
  • Establish a relationship with a senior business mentor.
  • Strengthen strategy, leadership and business management skills.
  • Gain skills in finance, marketing, and strategy needed to grow and scale their enterprise.
  • Develop a toolkit of soft skills, including self-confidence, resilience, collaboration, and cross-cultural communications.


  • There is no program fee to participate in AWEC. Fellows are required to commit their time (4 to 6 hours per week for one year), hard work and energy to being an active learner and participant in the AWEC community. Fellows may incur costs related to attending an optional in-person event.


Women who are:

  • Founders of businesses that have been in operation for at least two years in any industry and have at least two employees (either full time or part time) OR women who have a strong business concept and plan to launch their business within the next year.
  • Founders of social enterprises are encouraged to apply; founders of NGOs or nonprofit organizations are no longer eligible for the 12-month program.
  • Citizens of any African country, currently living on the continent or in the diaspora.
  • Comfortable with remote teamwork and collaboration, especially using digital tools.
  • Proficient in verbal and written English.
  • Able to regularly (at least weekly) access the Internet through a computer or tablet.


This program is rigorous and time intensive. Fellows should expect to:

  • Spend an average of 4 to 6 hours per week participating in AWEC activities, primarily online.
  • Participate in at least one AWEC activity per week throughout the program, including Zoom-enabled meetings.
  • Be challenged, stretched, and inspired as they acquire new knowledge.
  • Develop skills, build their peer network, and transform their businesses.
  • Be matched with a mentor and to take ownership of their mentor/mentee relationship.
  • Be introduced to a peer group, and actively contribute to group discussions and activities.
  • Gain access to a program advisor from whom they can seek support when needed.
  • Respond to periodic surveys to improve the overall experience.


For the best user experience, it is strongly recommended that you use a desktop PC or laptop to apply.

Click here to apply

For more information, see FAQs and visit AWEC.