Under the Building Better Regions Fund, Community Investment stream, Women In Business & Regional Development will receive $20,000 for their project ‘WiBRD Mentor Connect program’. This project will connect up to 170 current members and aspiring businesswomen over two years with an objective to improve their leadership capabilities and confidence via a structured mentoring program led by Women in Business & Regional Development and delivered both online through their website as an online mentor portal and through community-based opportunities.
The project’s is about enhancing leadership capacity, encouraging cohesion and identity among regional businesswomen, and positively impacting economic activity. The project will be developed and trialled over two years. The grant will enable WiBRD to establish an interactive and sustainable mentoring framework delivered to network members via the WiBRD website. After two years, the online portal, Mentor Champions, and the participant alumni will sustain ongoing engagement and application of mentoring opportunities for women across the region.
The WiBRD mentoring framework, program resources, and facilitation of the Mentor Champion training and associated activities will be designed collaboratively by the WiBRD Board and local expertise. The framework will inform the customisation of a licenced mentoring software package accessible to members via the WiBRD website. Members will be able to register interest as a mentor or mentee on the WiBRD online portal. The mentoring software will facilitate mentor and mentee matching and subsequent community-based and virtual mentoring opportunities for businesswomen in the region. The framework will align with the recognised Mentoring Australia Benchmarks to establish a quality mentoring.
The project will be rolled out over two years across the region and target no less than one hundred
and seventy women, ranging in various business levels from side hustle to a full-time business, start-ups, and long-term business owners. The project will align with scheduled member development activities, mentoring workshops, and networking opportunities. Additionally, WiBRD wilt promote and receive expressions of interest from women in the region, agreeing to contribute their time as Mentor champions. These project champions from various industry and experience levels will support the project’s promotion and engagement by sharing mentoring knowledge and experiences with peers in respective networks. The Mentor Champions will partake in a tailored mentoring presentation; Mentoring for success, to define their knowledge of the mentoring project and the online portal. WiRBD will demonstrate the portal and enlistment process, techniques, tools, and resources to strengthen quality mentoring practices. They will then be connected up with the Mentee’s. This will develop skills and foster a peer culture to support continuing mentoring into the future.