With Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) 2021 right around the corner, national hosts are working hard to bring campaigns to life in 200 countries. In the weeks leading up to GEW (Nov. 8-14), GEN will spotlight some of these campaigns to share how entrepreneurs are being inspired and empowered in different parts of the world.
GEN caught up with Henry Ong of the Young Entrepreneur Society, the national host for Global Entrepreneurship Week in the Philippines, to learn about the activities planned across the country, the collaboration taking place to make it all possible, and goals for the 2021 campaign.
Ong is the executive director of the Young Entrepreneur Society and the lead for GEW Philippines.
GEN: How is the Philippines coming together to celebrate GEW?
Henry Ong, GEW Philippines: Last year, because of the pandemic, we were not able to organize well because so much was happening and the sentiment was not positive. This year, though, people are more optimistic. We are planning to organize series of webinars during the week for 5,000+ participants who will come from different parts of the Philippines. We are collaborating with a new event provider who will offer business webinars and talks in celebration of GEW. This is our first time doing large online events.
GEN: What key activities are taking place in the Philippines during GEW?
Henry Ong, GEW Philippines: We are going to have a regional competition of business idea pitches from different parts of the country. Each regional champion will face-off in the finals during GEW. We have arranged a series of training opportunities this month to help prepare students to develop and pitch their business idea in the new normal economy.
We will also have a forum online with different policymakers. We will be discussing opportunities and ways to strengthen our entrepreneurial ecosystem. We will have series of online talks by successful entrepreneurs in different parts of the Philippines. Each region will invite their champion entrepreneurs who will share their experiences and encouragement during this time of crisis.
GEN: What are your goals for GEW 2021?
Henry Ong, GEW Philippines: My goal for this year is to raise awareness about the importance of entrepreneurship, highlighting the need for us to be more resourceful, innovative, and optimistic beyond the crisis. This pandemic has caused many people to lose jobs. Many businesses are closing down. Instead of losing hope, this is the time to be more creative and keep up our fighting spirit alive. We should all work together to find ways and solutions.
GEN: What do you want the world to know about your country's startup ecosystem? What trends, if any, are you noticing?
Henry Ong, GEW Philippines: The Philippine startup ecosystem is a growing community. We now have more people going into the startup space, compared to five years ago. Even in our education system, schools are now using business canvas and lean startup methods with senior high students. This is positive progress and we hope to contribute to the growth of our ecosystem.
To learn more about Global Entrepreneurship Week activities in your region, visit www.gew.co.