The Tech African Women (TAW) program is now officially up and running. Its goal is to help and speed up women-owned tech startups in Africa, taking them from the idea stage to the real world.

The Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) of the United Nations is in charge of TAW. In partnership with Betacube, the ECA is inviting female-led idea-stage startups from Ethiopia, Senegal, Tanzania, and Tunisia to apply to join.

The goal of the program is to “empower” female founders to use their skills to build strong tech startups from scratch, speed up the process of turning project ideas into validated business models, and build partnerships between different ecosystems in Africa.

During the time they are in the incubation program, the applicants will have free access to a group of tech developers and designers who will help and guide their teams.

Participants will also have the chance to work closely with top experts in Marketing and Finance and take part in webinars designed for them by trainers from around the world.

The program will run from August 2022 to December 2022. It has three main parts:

First, there will be a series of 3-day intensive training bootcamps and pitching competitions in Tunisia, Senegal, Ethiopia, and Tanzania, which will be held in partnership with local ecosystem players. Each bootcamp’s winning team will get $2,000 in cash.

Then, the best two startups from each country will take part in a 2-month online incubation program to help them get ready for the market and investors.

At the end of the program, there will be a ceremony at the ECA Conference Center in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, where the 8 finalists will pitch their ideas for the chance to win the $7000 cash prize for the best startup.

“TAW targets female-led and idea-stage tech startups and gives these startup teams a unique chance to learn new business skills, form partnerships with their African peers, make their businesses more visible in the region, and get access to funds,” says the announcement of the initiative’s launch.

“It helps ideas that address Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by building the skills of female entrepreneurs who want to learn how to play a part in the development of the continent and want to learn more about building impact-driven startups.”

How do I use?

Participants must be from Tunisia, Tanzania, Senegal, or Ethiopia, and they must have an idea for a tech startup that helps with at least one of the SDGs. Participants must be women between the ages of 18 and 35 and be able to speak French or English well.

Candidates from the four countries can now apply on the program’s official website until August 10, 2022 for Tunisia and August 17, 2022 for Ethiopia, Senegal, and Tanzania.