Badiri Education and Development Academy Building a Sustainable and Practical Future for Women

Naima Al Amiri, the owner of a company specialising in organising exhibitions, enrolled in the BadiriBusiness Entrepreneurship Programme (BBEP) in 2017 and 2018. She says the training played an important part in developing her leadership skills, broadened her horizons in project management, apart from teaching her how to organise finances and develop marketing plans.“All the participants who joined with me benefitted equally,” she says, smiling confidently. This story has been reiterated by more than 8,900 people who continue to benefit from their learnings and training at the Badiri Education and Development Academy (Badiri), the education and capacity development arm of NAMA Women Advancement Establishment (NAMA). It’s a unique hub, which was initially designed to realise the entrepreneurial potential of women in the UAE. 

Over the years, it has honed its members’ vocational, entrepreneurial and organisational skills, and offered them practical tools to successfully translate their ideas into entrepreneurial projects. Inspired by the positive change Badiri’s educational programmes have continued to bring about in the lives of these women, the entity recently globalised its outreach with the Badiri E-Academy – a free-learning platform packed with specialised courses offered to anyone and everyone in the world who want to advance their lives and careers. HE Reem BinKaram, Director of NAMA, says Badiri was created following their vision to create a more specialised training hub for aspiring and current women entrepreneurs, who either have a great business idea and lack the training or resources to materialise their business concepts, or those who have managed to get their businesses on the road, but face several challenges as they may not be fully aware of the market requirements/challenges and aren’t equipped to navigate through them.“We are extremely pleased with the way our programmes and training courses have been received by the UAE’s female entrepreneurs. Alongside the approximately 9,000 people who have attended our array of programmes, Badiri’s general workshops have seen the participation of 171 women.

“The academy has paved way for these women to begin their entrepreneurial journeys and enabled others to start their businesses. Our mission aligns with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultanbin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah and Her HighnessSheikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, Wife of His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah and chairperson NAMA, to equip women with the skills and resources that they need to a build sustainable and practical futures for themselves,” says BinKaram.From business entrepreneurship to social entrepreneurship and more, the Badiri Academy has three programmes that cover essential aspects of entrepreneurial learning, and equip the current generation of female entrepreneurs with international best practices in the field. Badiri Business Entrepreneurship Programme (BBEP)The Badiri Business Entrepreneurship Programme (BBEP) helps the participants to turn their ideas into successful business projects and start-ups. The programme aims to develop intellectual and entrepreneurial skill sets, educating the participants on all aspects of entrepreneurship and start-ups. So far, 85 women have benefited from the programme.BBEP graduate, Naima Al Amiri, is deeply grateful for the training she received under the programme.

She remembers: “We were eager to learn how to start our businesses from our mentors who have a wealth of expertise in entrepreneurship. And we did, through a practical and hands-on approach to tackling real-life problems faced by other entrepreneurs and coming up with innovative solutions and ideas to overcome them.”Al Amiri already ran a company that specialises in organising heritage exhibitions. Her participation in the Badiri training programmes not only helped her to expand her business but she also ventured into creating a souvenir production line that meets market demands. “BPEP taught me to dream practical dreams,” beams Al Amiri. 

The 8-month BBEP course includes training classes and sessions for 6-7 weeks, in addition to field training, mentoring and technical support for 4-5 weeks. The course is held several times a year, across different venues in Sharjah. Badri Social Entrepreneurship Programme (BSEP)Launched in 2018, in cooperation with UK-based School for Social Entrepreneurs (SSE), the BadiriSocial Entrepreneurship Programme (BSEP) is a rigorous action-learning based 10-month programme. It has showcased vibrant models of successful social projects worldwide to 30programme participants this far, inspiring them to develop their own socially-minded business ideas. 

The programme’s customised curriculum affords them guided experiences in three countries, UAE, UK and India. Maryam Al Qayed, a BSEP graduate and founder of the Al Biqsha project, which produces Emirati souvenirs and gifts, underscored that the programme features quality content that meets the highest standards.Al Qayed said: “My Al Biqsha project incorporates heritage gifts in partnership with artists and artisans. There is a great demand for these gifts inspired by Emirati culture from both tourists and residents. The BSEP offered to develop my project which brings together profitability and social value.”More importantly, she says the course enables participants to face up to pressing social challenges. 

Badiri E-AcademyThe Badiri E-Academy is the latest addition to Badiri’s programmes, and one of the key initiatives under its umbrella. While Badiri focuses on women’s advancement, the Badiri E-Academy is open to everyone with internet access worldwide, as its founders believe that information and knowledge should be accessible to everyone.The courses offered on this e-learning platform have already supported 8,301 learners, and continues to meet the needs of university students, businesswomen and men, entrepreneurs and others with professional training courses in business, entrepreneurship, professional development, culture and science, in Arabic as well as English. The programmes will gradually expand to include additional courses and languages.













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