By Sharoon Shahid
27th June, 2020 marked the 2nd anniversary of ConnectedWomenPakistan, a social enterprise working assiduously to facilitate women professionals and entrepreneurs in their journey towards growth and success. To celebrate this feat and two years of its existence in Pakistan, the organization held a magnificent virtual gala conducted through Zoom that had over 70 attendees.
ConnectedWomenPakistan was brought into the country by Tehmina A. Chaudhary, President of the organization in June, 2018 and is the Pakistan chapter of the international organization Connected Women established and run by Gina Romero. The Pakistan Chapter of the organization is led and managed by Tehmina A. Chaudhary and Zeea Hassan Talib, working in the capacity of the President and Vice President of the organization, respectively. The organization led by the two successful and strong women entrepreneurs is on a mission to raise the economic intelligence of the country through empowering Pakistani women. It aims to boost the growth of women professionals through capacity building, skill development and training in business, entrepreneurship and professional growth.
From its inception till now, ConnectedWomenPakistan has trained, honored, celebrated, facilitated and highlighted more than 2000 women entrepreneurs and professionals; has conducted around 32 real-time meet-ups and 25 business networking and training live sessions in Islamabad, Karachi, Lahore and Wah Cantt; organized the first Women of Wonders Awards 2020 to celebrate the successes of our women; and organized several business clinics to support and assist struggling and budding businesses to grow better through mentoring and consultations.
Due to the current quarantine scenario because of the Covid-19 pandemic, this year, after February onwards ConnectedWomenPakistan could not hold any of its real-time workshops, training and consultation sessions. However, this did not keep the organization from following its pursuit of facilitating and servicing women professionals. It continued to function through online media and conducted business clinics and workshops via webinars and online conferences powered by Zoom and Streamyard, to educate women entrepreneurs and professionals on how to run their businesses, build their brands, conduct social media marketing, design posts and boost their growth amidst the pandemic. It also organized a two week-long brilliant Virtual Women Shopping Spree in Ramadan, 2020 that showcased several women owned businesses through online sessions providing them with a chance to generate leads and sales online.
Since the organization was turning 2 years old in June, its core team wanted to celebrate this milestone as well as express their gratitude to all the esteemed members and supporters of the organization who have participated in its sessions and have helped it grow. This goal was achieved through an online meetup conducted via Zoom on 27th June, 2020. It was a lovely video conference based meet-up that run for more than 2 hours and comprised of around 70 attendees. The Virtual Gala was run and moderated by the core team of the organization comprising of Mahrukh Qadeer, Fareeha Malik, Sharoon Shahid, Sana Sheraz, Kiran Sheikh and Firdous Arsal besides the main leaders. It featured a variety of fun-filled games, activities and quizzes that kept the attendees hooked throughout the two hour session. The attendees were given brief sessions on the importance of staying positive in dark times as well as on staying fit and healthy. Every game and activity ended with many prizes distributed amongst the attendees that were sponsored by women owned businesses including INSTA Foods, Nashtay walay, Allure Jewelry, Learning Lab, Nazia’s Kitchen, Essiz, The Event Studio, Zan Abayas, Yusra Caters, Nefis, Fitness Beats, D Samz House of Jewels and Fasana.
This virtual gala was a one of its kind celebration that left all the attendees feeling energized, happy and motivated to fight the pandemic with greater force and motivation. Its core goal was to provide the participants with a chance to connect with one another, relax and forget their tensions for some time. The two hour session proved to be a massive hit to the extent that none of the attendees felt like exiting the meet-up and it was ended on the note that many more such events will be held virtually till we can safely bid adieu to the Coronavirus.
The Virtual Gala organized by ConnectedWomenPakistan proved to be yet another feather in the organization’s cap and only exhibited the fact that in the chauvinistic society prevailing in our country, this organization is a ray of hope for aspiring, budding and existing women professionals.
Written by Sharoon Shahid, the Community Lead of ConnectedWomenPakistan, a content and copy writer and Co-Founder of Sofolo, a full service digital marketing agency.