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Empowered Women International unlocks the potential of women through the power of entrepreneurship. We empower women in the Greater DC Metro area facing economic and social challenges, including immigrants, refugees, and Americans with low income, to become economically mobile, financially stable and socially engaged.

In 2017, we completed our merger with long-time partners the Latino Economic Development Center. With complementary target populations, programs, and services, LEDC and EWI have identified an opportunity to build upon respective successes by joining forces to serve more clients with a broader range of programs and support. Following the merger, EWI will become a program under the LEDC umbrella, maintaining its name and high caliber of client service. Read the complete press release here.

four ewi entrepreneurs

At EWI, we offer talented and creative women dynamic training programs with professional teachers, mentors and a supportive peer community where they can achieve their entrepreneurial dreams.

An Innovative Approach

Each year we serve over 350 women with our award-winning approach, Entrepreneur Pathways for Women, which integrates training, mentoring, and support services. We meet women where they are on the pathway to self-sufficiency and help them move forward.

  • Our training offers women the skills and knowledge essential to entrepreneurial and workforce success.
  • Dedicated mentors provide ongoing support as women apply new skills to their emerging businesses.
  • We partner with a broad network of social and business services to meet individual needs and provide expanded opportunity.

“It is much harder if you’re starting on your own. EWI is doing wonderful work supporting women who probably won’t get assistance elsewhere starting their own business.”
— Sachi Tani, Artist & Owner of Wooden Pencil Co. ETS Spring 2015 Graduate

Programs Designed for Growth

Entrepreneur Pathways for Women offers three program options so women can choose the training and support they need to pursue their dreams, each step of the way.

  • Entrepreneur Training for Success (ETS) An intensive three month, 60-hour course for women ready to learn what it takes to become an entrepreneur and bring their business ideas to life. Classes of 10-15 women meet twice weekly for three months. Offered in Fall and Spring in three locations.
  • Grow My Business (GMB) A business acceleration training program designed to equip women for growth in new and existing microenterprises. Training in business plan implementation, development and strategy paired with expert coaching and peer support. Classes of 10-15 meet twice monthly for six months each year.
  • Entrepreneur Support Services (ESS) Year-round personalized business assistance, workshops, and referrals available for over 300 EWI students, alumni, and community entrepreneurs. Targeted support, along with opportunities to access markets and capital, allows women to overcome barriers to personal and professional growth.

“EWI helped me find a centralized focus and build my confidence. With EWI, I have experienced a lot of growth both within myself and my business.”
— Ujjayini Brawley, Chef & Owner of Bon Vegan Eats, ETS Spring 2015 Graduate

The Ripple Effect

As women take their next step on the pathway to entrepreneurship with EWI, they experience professional and personal renewal that benefits their family and community. Over 80% of EWI alumni proudly give back to their communities by donating goods and services to local nonprofits, schools, and charities.

We have served more than 4,000 women whose success radiates in a myriad of ways. Highlights from recent graduates include:

  • 97% say they’ve increased their social support network through EWI
  • 70% consider themselves to be better role models for their children
  • 71% experienced greater economic mobility through a new job, income growth, or further education
  • 42% increased sales after program completion

rockville pitches 2015

Courageous women share their stories and pitch their businesses

EWI’s entrepreneurs unveil their strategic plans and pitch their businesses. The event features women at all stages of business growth: women who are just beginning their journey, and some with years of experience who are taking their business to the next level through our Grow My Business program.

Video Highlights


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