We have been focusing the last couple of months in developing and delivering renewed food entrepreneurial skill/set building courses as part of our most recent partnership with Comfama - a non-profit whose mission as a Family Compensation Fund is to improve employees and their families quality of life by administering both monetary and in/kind subsidies including informal continued education programs-. This alliance has provided us with resources, allowing us to facilitate scholarships and reach those underserved and head of household women entrepreneurs who can benefit the most from our courses. Also,we have gained greater local and national visibility. We have incorporated lessons learned from our previous cohorts about the needs of underserved women entrepreneurs and specifically on the skills and tools from which they benefit the most. We understood, from our previous experiences with our students and alums-, underserved entrepreneurial women need to know themselves better as entrepreneurs in the food industry, understand in depth the needs of their customers and how these can inspire them and allow them to innovate with their products and learn to set prices and keep accounts of their business and analyze the financial results to make decisions that allow them to grow, be sustainable and sometimes be renewed.
As part of this partnership, a group of 29 entrepreneurs underwent our most recently enhanced virtual training and mentorship program. Cocinando Sueños, our course, allowed women to find their essence and the purpose of their food ventures, to understand the needs of their customers; as well as to acquire tools that guide them towards making important decisions for their ventures, maximizing their entrepreneurial potential, as well as that of their businesses.
When asked about what they gained from the course women replied:
"Each class was of great help, since I could see the clearest things in terms of the entrepreneurship that I am building. I learned many things from the being and for the being which will help me in the future when it comes to creating, strengthening, improving reinventing my brand, starting from learning how to change my thoughts, and attitudes that sometimes are not the right ones to start the path to be an entrepreneur, since behind a great venture there must be a brave, noble and good entrepreneur."
"Making the prototype of a new product seemed very cool and I enjoyed it since it is something that I will implement in one that will come out this Christmas season, and I found it pleasant to connect an experience from my venture. Many thanks to Comfama, Kalpata and the whole team that allowed entrepreneurs like me to have tools that at this time and in the future are and will be very valid and important."
We are currently working on developing and launching a new dream course to reach more Colombian women in need of our support. This time we will go back to in-person classes as a request of our recently graduated cohort. We will be opening 4 groups of 40 students on average. To make this a reality, we have a new professor with 20 years of experience teaching and guiding gastronomic entrepreneurs in pricing and basic finance. We have also restructured our course and our working on devising innovative strategies to address our retention challenge.
We continue to be very grateful for all the support of our team, our donors, partners, sponsors and volunteers. Your support has allowed us to be able to continue offering our courses to entrepreneurial Colombian women in need in the food industry, increasing their income, improving their quality of life and that of their families. We welcome and are very grateful for your generous donations and support allowing us to continue making entrepreneurial food industry dreams come true for our students and alums.