Lebanon needs entrepreneurs. Faced with a situation where access to even the most basic infrastructure is met by challenging situations, Lebanese youth typically have two choices: they can either choose to not do anything and accept things as they are, or they could embrace change and be its advocates. Recognizing the sentiments towards the entrepreneurial mindsets in its youth, Lebanon has launched a national initiative called the Startup Scouts.
Structured as a training and support program for aspiring and early-stage entrepreneurs up to the age of 25, the initiative is open to innovators not only across Lebanon but those beyond it as well. Anyone who has a solution for a problem faced by Lebanese, they deeply care about can form part of this initiative.
The program which aims to nurture and promote entrepreneurs in Lebanon is organized by Pitchworthy and AltCity Impact, vide a strategic partnership with Startup Scouts, Summer of Innovation initiative and Alfa. The initiative has the backing of a team with “10 years of experience as active trainers and leaders in the startup ecosystem in Lebanon and EuroMENA.”
The belief that underscores this initiative is that the Lebanese youth “deserve the same right to high quality entrepreneurship education and support as someone in the city of Beirut, and that everyone across the MENA region deserve the same high quality entrepreneurship education and support as someone in London, Boston, or Silicon Valley”.
The program aims to create a platform for entrepreneurs to make which makes the aforementioned statement a reality. Its mission statement says, “The main emphasis of the program is to help young people across Lebanon get help with those critical foundations of their startups, and then to help them access other next stage opportunities, funding, and support.”
Focused on creating and nurturing green shoots of innovation in Lebanese youth, the program aims to solve key challenges facing Lebanon, the MENA region and the world, by supporting solutions in sectors, including but not limited to education, smart governance, sustainability, and healthcare among others.
The initiative has declared that it can help aspiring entrepreneurs in acquiring the required technical and soft skills which can enable them to join a “community of change makers,” as well as provide them access to tools to scale their business.
Launched on July 9 in the presence of Prime Minister Saad Hariri, Startup Scouts has an Open House session scheduled from July 16 to July 26. The applications to the training and support program close on July 28.