SE Woman

with support from JPM

Left to right: Kowsar Aden, Helene Mortimer, Lina Lagerbäck, Mehret Mengistab, Anna Lithagen and Eva Jarlsdotter, who was in charge of running the program. 

In 2015 SE Forum launched SE Woman – a social business capacity-building program for women in the suburbs of Stockholm. The program was supported by JPMorgan, and provided women entrepreneurs with the knowledge required to start and run social businesses.

It was an intense program filled with seminars, workshops, mentorship, individual coaching sessions and networking events to provide the entrepreneurs with the inspiration, tools, and resources needed to accelerate their businesses and make a positive impact within their communities.

SE Woman made it possible for the participants to build the foundation for viable social businesses. The vision was to contribute to greater equality, both between men and women but also between people of different ethnic backgrounds within social entrepreneurship and business. The long-term objective of the program is also to establish sustainable businesses that create positive impact in the communities where they operate.

The SE Woman sessions ran in the evening, approximately three times per month. In between the workshops the participants had individual coaching sessions with their mentors and the experts who participated in the program.

SE Woman: In Focus

SE Forum seek to have a positive impact on the local communities in which our programs operate. To better understand the impact and diversity of the SE Woman entrepreneurs, take a look at the following examples.

Inspiring everyday environment

Lina Lagerbäck of We Unite Design transforms ordinary rooms into inspiring ones. An ordinary classroom in a Stockholm suburb became a place of motivation where students wanted to go to study. Lina uses recycled materials and engages students in the creative process to transform their environment. For her work at Granbacka skolan she received Sollentuna environmental prize 2015.

Somali storytelling

When Kowsar Aden was seven years old her father died, and she was sent from Somalia to Sweden to live with a family that she didn’t know. Motivated by her own experience, she started Nabad Consulting, which aims to bridge cultural differences through lecturing, mentoring and coaching. She has become a speaker on these issues, including participation at Almedalen 2015, where she was a panelist alongside Mårten Palme, son of Olof Palme. Kowsar also works with children in the suburbs of northern Stockholm, encouraging them to read and write by using techniques inspired by Somali storytelling traditions.