Virtually mobilizing to empower real change for women entrepreneurs in Colombia.
2021, Antioquia, Colombia (Virtual)
Topics: Public Sector / International Development / Co-creation & Facilitation
The reshift team collaborated with USAID's INVEST team, USAID’s Office of Gender Equality & Women's Empowerment, the Colombia Mission, and Pro Mujer International to design and run USAID's first virtual "Whole System in a Room" (WSR) workshop to improve access to credit for women in Colombia.
The Grand Challenge aimed to do so by mobilizing governments, companies, foundations, development agencies, and a wide variety of women-led organizations facing credit barriers to challenge discriminatory norms; reform restrictive laws, policies, and practices; and implement inclusive laws and policies.
We facilitated a dialogue between key stakeholders to narrow the project focus to rural women in Antioquia, an area with challenges integrating people into the formal economy. We then conducted original research with Antioquian women and created a gender lens system map of the region as a foundation for group discussion.
The multi-session workshop agenda included plenary sessions for large group discussions and breakouts where smaller teams of participants used personas and journey mapping to gain insights into Antioquian women’s situations, plus ideation and prototyping to develop innovative credit access solutions.
We managed all participant recruitment for 70 representatives from more than 40 Colombian organizations, including government agencies, businesses, NGOs, and Indigenous groups.
We facilitated the workshop sessions in Spanish over three weeks. Many of the rural women attendees had never before participated in an event where people sought their opinions. After the workshop, we hosted online coaching sessions to guide participants on the formation of consortia and development of concepts for INVEST review.
As a result of the workshop, INVEST invested $2 million in concepts from consortia that are now operational.