BPW Ireland Public Speaking Competition for Senior Female Students

When a member of Howth BPW created the idea of a Public Speaking Competition, delivered in the guise of a meeting format, a unique and important idea was born. This competition is the only one of its kind in all of Europe. The competition provides a specific mechanism for girls to sharpen their skills running a meeting, relevant to BPW, and provides an opportunity to nurture the skill of public speaking, relevant to the rest of the world.

BPW Ireland Public Speaking Competition Guidelines

The following are the Guidelines that we use during the competition. The entries are sent to schools in the area and each are invited to submit teams of 3 female senior students to enter the competition, normally after the midterm break in October.  The winning team moves forward to meet the winning teams from other clubs.  This is the National Final and is held in November.

The 2 Winning teams from the National Final then compete against the winning teams from Northern Ireland and we hold the competition in the following February of each year.  The competition alternates, one year it is held in the South of Ireland and the following year in Northern Ireland.  This has been the most successful event ever held by BPW Ireland and is eagerly anticipated each year by schools and clubs alike.  We are very proud to be the instigators of such event.

We chose our adjudicators very carefully, they come from a very varied background but are of a caliber which is recognized. They are well known for their achievements in their own individual fields.  We are delighted to have a great talent bank of adjudicators which we have built up over the years and who are very keen to be involved from year to year.  We take great care not to repeat adjudicators and to vary the panel as much possible.

This competition is run with great care and attention and with huge respect for the pupils and teachers alike who regularly take part as an extra curriculum activity.  All the clubs in Ireland take part and share the effort that is equaled throughout the country.

Lilian Hunt


BPW Ireland



I want to hasten to say that my life has been eternally changed! There are great people on the earth but the greatest of those who are great are those that are able to stretch out to touch another life for the better! I want to say therefore that the women of BPW Zambia Chapter are not just business people or just professional people, they are great people. Great women.

My name is Esther Faith Yeshua. I am a Zambian lady who just graduated from the University of Zambia with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Microbiology.

I have walked through some extraordinary dryness in my life and have seen how life can be at its very lowest, least comfortable. I live in NG’OMBE COMPOUND, LUSAKA where most people live on less than US$2 per day and many are not educated. I am the first person from this community to graduate from university.

Girls drop out of school to get married and some due to lack of financial support or the general indifferent culture of the community. The men they marry are mostly uneducated and have jobs as security guards or house helps. Many of these girls have potential and given an opportunity would make better lives for themselves.

I met Mukwandi Chibesakunda who decided to take me to a women CEOs network dinner. Amongst the women I met at the dinner was Sylvia B. Mwansa, BPW Zambia President, who was our host. I also met my now mentor, Tembi Simuchoba, the Executive Director BPW Zambia, at the dinner.

That was the beginning of my life in BPW. After I attended my first BPW meeting, I was encouraged and driven to a new level of passion for women empowerment.

The entire BPW Zambia got involved in making my graduation a huge success. They helped me raise money for me to pay for my participation fee, graduation gown and enough to cater for all the costs that go into graduating.

I have met great women through BPW and I have widened my networking circle. Through BPW, I had the privilege to usher at the TEEN VISION TRUST ‘Creating the Future’ conference this year. This was a life changing experience for me because I met and learnt from key people in the Zambian Society.

I have developed rich and key relationships with the YBPW and BPW members. My life has been changed! Thank you BPW, you are all truly wonderful women.

Esther Faith Yeshua

Young BPW Zambia

Sylvia B. Mwansa is proud of Esther’s achievement and said: “We can do so much together, if only we can see where we can spend quality time together and make the difference to many as bold women, Courageous women, and Empowered Women Leading Business!

Young BPW France: Make female entrepreneurship happen

Female entrepreneurship being at the core of BPW values ever since its inception, though not being publicized much from a social and business aspect, members from BPW France thought a few years ago that a special commission dealing with the subject could be created.

The initial idea was to have a group of women – actual entrepreneurs, wannabe entrepreneurs and even those with merely an interest in entrepreneurship – gather to share and learn from each other’s experiences and lessons learned. The commission actually proved to have a few more positive outputs. It is a place where female entrepreneurs who usually dedicate themselves 24/7 to their project can come, talk and take some perspective on what they are pursuing. It is also a key to mentorship: the « if she made it why could I not? » question still being a trigger for most women. The commission also aims at changing a situation where only 30% of entrepreneurs are female, again with an aim to convince women that provided they have the right info and coaching, they too can make it. Last but not least, it is a tool aimed at encouraging entrepreneurs, whether male of female, to take the first step towards success.

The commission was first established in 2010, after one year of thinking and planning. Its members gather on a monthly basis to share on special topics and also to give their insight on what makes an entrepreneur’s life so special (regulatory obligations, financing needs, etc.). They are also encouraged to share best practices and skills (e.g. if someone is proficient in IT, accounting, etc., these skills can be shared on a free basis). The commission can also be seen at special events such as the Salon des Entrepreneurs, a commercial fare attracting thousands of entrepreneurs and business managers in both Lyon and Paris.
The commission leaders are now focusing on developing partnerships with other like-minded groups to extend their visibility and scope of actions. They are also trying to get involved into concrete national and European-level projects such as Kimi. If men have proved able to develop far-reaching, powerful networks, why couldn’t we?

Entrepreneurship for Women Commission

Reported by Young BPW France

2011 Young BPW Europe La Spezia Cup

It is a pleasure to announce that the Young BPW Cup 2011 is now opened. We kindly ask you to encourage your outstanding Young BPW members to apply for this award. The award ceremony will be a special experience for them.

Young BPW  Cup La Spezia 2011 will take place this year

On        Saturday 26 November 2011

In         Castello San Giorgio – La Spezia, in Italy

At         17h00

To apply for the Young BPW La Spezia Cup 2011 the candidates have to

–         be Young BPW members for at least two years

–        send a detailed curriculum vitae underlining her age, profession and, or activity as YOUNG BPW

–        Please bear in mind that the maximum age of Young BPW is 35 years old

–        Provide a documented recommendation written by your BPW Federations or by your affiliated clubs, BPW Europe  affiliate

Clubs, Project Partners and Institutions

–        Please be aware that the awarded candidates are required to be personally present to collect the prize.

(BPW Europe supports the travelling cost  within 200 EUR. Hotel (one night) and award ceremony dinner  cost will be paid by BPW La Spezia.).

The jury is an independent jury composed of Alessandra Del Monte, Mirella Barbagli, Giuseppina Pravettoni and Enrica Bellini BPW Europe Finance Officer (for BPW Europe Young Category).

Admittance and selections: the admitted candidates will be selected by a vote by a majority for a pass-list.

Result notification and awarding: the awarded candidates will receive a written notification. Please be aware that if the awarded candidate will not be personally collecting her prize the award will pass onto the next chosen candidate in the pass-list.

The award is a sculpture made by the internationally known artist MARISA MARINO, representing her feeling on womanliness. Marisa Marino is a member of La Spezia Club.

To submit your application you  MUST send all requested information by Monday 15 of November 2011, to the following contacts:

–          Alessandra Del Monte   ADM.alessandradelmonte@gmail.com

–          Giuseppina Pravettoni   stellacanese@alice.it

–          Enrica Bellini    enricabellini914@gmail.com

Please do not hesitate to contact them for further information.

The Young BPW Europe Award  is hosted and organized by BPW La Spezia, Italy to distinguish Young BPW members from Europe for their leadership and professionalism. It is given at a public ceremony with the presence of authorities, artists and a large public to recognize the merit of the winners.

Many thanks.

Best regards

Miette Dechelle
Young BPW Europe Representative 2011-2014

Young BPW Buenos Aires October 2011 Update

Sofia Torroba, a member of the BPW Buenos Aires and the Young BPW Buenos Aires Committee Representative, shared very exciting latest news and events updates from Buenos Aires: 
September 28th to October 2nd, 2011 – Rio +20

Dr. Estefania Ponce represented BPW Buenos Aires at the Youth Latin American Congress, Road to Rio +20. The event was held in Cordoba, Argentina from September 28th to October 2nd, 2011. Based on a pilot experience in Argentina, an innovation initiative for sustainable development was presented.

Read and learn more about the event: Latin American Youth Congress

October 8th, 2011 – Self Image by Patricia Bologna

On October 8th, 2011 the Young BPW Buenos Aires Committee organized a Self Image presentation held in a French Bar in Buenos Aires. It was an interesting breakfast meeting with women from Haiti and Colombia offered by Patricia Bologna to Women Refugees on UNHCR. Before the end of the event, BPW Buenos Aires presented participants with the certificate of participation in the Feminizing of the Migrations, Integration in the Diversity project. The breakfast meeting turned out to be one of a kind, successful and full of emotions event!

With warm regards Young BPW Buenos Aires Committee!

2009 YCM letter – Working together to grow stronger!

The Executive Board of the Business & Professional Women- Amman Association [BPW-A] believes that the sustainability of the organization can only be achieved if youth membership is invited and encouraged. For this purpose, 2009 saw extensive activities geared towards growing the youth membership base. BPW-A’s youth program consisted of:

1- Outreach to young females to create awareness about the activities of the organization, BPW-A’s Executive Director and organized visits, presentations and roadshows to all the universities in the Capital Amman, targeting female students in the business schools. These students at Al-Ahliyya Amman University, Princess Sumayya University for Technology, Applied Science University, Al-Zaytoonah University, University of Jordan, Petra University, Al Isra Private University and NYIT were invited to attend a workshop on entrepreneurship and were informed about the activities and services of BPW-A.
2- Capacity building geared towards female youth. BPW-A with support from the World Bank, and the MENA Business Women’s Network conducted a two day training for young women on entrepreneurship on 27 and 28 March 2009. This event, hosted by Princess Sumayya University for Technology, gave over 40 young women a chance to network amongst themselves and with the speakers. At the workshop the young women were introduced to female entrepreneurs, possibilities for funding, confidence building, and learning how to write a business plan, and more.
3- Growth of youth membership. All the young women who participated in the entrepreneurship workshop, as well as other female students who expressed interest in becoming active with BPW-A were offered a one year free youth membership with BPW-A. this membership was subsidized by MENA BWN’s grant. BPW-A’s youth base is now more than 50 members strong.
4- Internship opportunities for youth BPW-A followed up the Entrepreneurship workshop by offering several workshop participants a six week internship to gain professional experience. They were hosted by businesses owned or operated by female professionals. They were introduced to female role models, made professional networks, gained practical work experience, and enhanced their employment possibilities by adding work experience to their CVs. Some youth also received guidance from BPW-A staff on resume’ building.
5- Services targeted to youth. Since launching the youth program, the young members have been introduced to numerous training and networking opportunities. Several young members are now serving on Young BPW International committees. One member was nominated for and attended a workshop in France [in cooperation with the Jordan Career Education Foundation], among other opportunities.
The youth program was conducted with support from the MENA BWN and the World Bank’s
“Young Women’s Entrepreneurship” Project.


Thank you Tuulikki Juusela for sharing this information! As the Young BPW International Representative I am focusing on the Leadership Training of Young BPWs and how BPW can achieve active young BPW membership in large numbers. More updates are coming soon!