Continuing from Part 1 of our series on Support Local women in business, we shine a spotlight on an organisation doing just that.
With COVID restrictions a year in, a group of local businesswomen got together to address the increasing need for support for female small business owners. They were increasingly alarmed by the impact of restrictions on women in business on the Mornington Peninsula and they wanted to help.
An important driver was to be able to mentor other women in business, to support each other and help careers to flourish. To do this they formed the ‘Women in Business’ association - a group of women business owners empowered to support each other, share knowledge and expertise and advocate for issues close to their hearts.
Successful local business owner Birte Moliere, owner of ‘Seed’, operates in the sustainability sector. She immediately saw the synergies of the group.
“It wasn’t about simply creating another networking group. It was about sharing opportunities, being advocates and giving back. It’s so important in these very challenging times that women work together to help each other, and their community,” she shared.
There is a real sense of connection and empathy. At their most recent online forum, dozens of women came together to share experiences and learn from each other.
“It was interesting how the group reflections on 2020 came through as challenging but definitely sprinkled with ‘COVID-opportunities’ – a chance to develop new ideas and to innovate, whereas now it’s ‘COVID-fatigue’ because continuously adapting in exhausting.”
“Sadly, there is more anger in the community now. We need to find common ground rather than divisiveness. Mental health is a real issue and it is more important than ever to collaborate during difficult times.”
Women in Business is about females supporting females. There are strong mentoring and capacity building aspects but built on a sustainability background.
There is a wealth of ways we can all support local. Yes, we can spend money locally, but it’s also about connecting with people and letting them know that they are supported.”