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Wednesday, January 24th  |  9:00-10:00 AM US Eastern Time



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A just transition to a greener global economy will require innovation, disruption, and the creation of new green markets —along with policy changes and collective action. If provided the right support and access, women businesses represent a powerful force to accelerate progress towards an inclusive, net-zero world through the innovative businesses that they develop. The objective of this webinar was to highlight the important role that Women Entrepreneurs have as innovators to contribute to climate action globally. The webinar included the perspectives of female climate entrepreneurs, exploring examples of innovative approaches to program design, and innovative climate financial instruments.

9:00 AM: Opening remarks

  • Wendy Teleki, Head of We-Fi Secreatariat

9:05 AM: Speakers

  • Basima Abdulrahman, KESK: Perspectives on the opportunities and barriers which women climate entrepreneurs face in starting and growing their business
  • Delila Khaled, ImpaXus: Overview of the untapped potential of women entrepreneurs to tackle the global waste crisis, drive circular innovation, and accelerate progress on climate goals
  • Heidi Hafes, Shell Foundation: Examples on how to apply a gender lens and support the growth of women-led businesses to enhance access to energy
  • Samuel Jovan Okullo, The World Bank: Approach how to close the gap between available climate finance resources and needs through the use of results-based mechanisms
  • Moderator: Wendy Teleki, Head of We-Fi Secretariat

9:45 AM: Q&A

10:00 AM: Closing

Basima Abdulrahman, founder and CEO, KESK

Basima is a greentech entrepreneur with over twelve years of diverse experience focused on sustainable development. She is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of the first greentech company in Iraq called KESK. Her company’s mission is to make smart green solutions trustable, accessible, and affordable. Basima is a World Economic Forum Foundation Board Member and Cultural Leader, TEDx speaker, and the 2021 Cartier Women’s Initiative laureate on MENA Region. Featured on TIME magazine, Inhabitat, Forbes, WEF Agenda, and the National for her work and projects in Iraq.

Delila Khaled, Founder & Principal, ImpaXus

Delila is a global development expert and entrepreneur driving impact, inclusion, and innovation at the nexus of people, planet, and prosperity. She has worked in more than 20 countries across Africa, Asia, the Middle East, and Latin America to improve recycling and waste management systems, increase water and sanitation services, advance entrepreneurship and innovation, and unlock access to finance. With a focus on women’s economic empowerment, gender equality, and social inclusion, Delila works with diverse sector stakeholders across the informal, private, and public sectors to foster partnerships, strengthen local capacity, and integrate gender considerations into policies, programming, and investments. She designed and launched USAID’s first ocean plastic pollution program and conducted what may be the only global gender analysis of municipal waste management and recycling. As an Engineering X Champion with the Royal Academy of Engineering, Delila recently led pioneering work on The Women-Waste-Climate Nexus. Prior to starting ImpaXus, Delila helped launch a gender lens venture fund, led the startup of a foreign policy think tank, and founded an international consulting firm. She serves on the Women of Waste Task Force at the International Solid Waste Association and is a Foundry Fellow with the Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship at the Massachusetts institute of Technology (MIT).

Heidi Hafes, Director of Solutions for Women and Marginalized Groups, Shell Foundation

Samuel Jovan Okullo (PhD), Climate Change Specialist, World Bank’s Climate Change Group

Samuel Jovan Okullo (PhD) is a Climate Change Specialist with the World Bank’s Climate Change Group, where his work focuses on policy deployment and resource mobilization to mitigate climate change and its impacts on the economy. As a member of the World Banks Compact with Africa Green Business Trust Fund, Samuel works on and helps deploy innovative financial models and approaches to scale climate finance for the benefit of SMEs in select African countries. Before the joining the Bank, Samuel was a research economist and university professor, teaching and publishing on the drivers and impacts of climate change and the better design of policies to address and respond to climate change.

Wendy Teleki, Head of the We-Fi Secretariat

Wendy Teleki is Head of the We-Fi Secretariat, which is housed in the World Bank Group. The Secretariat is responsible for supporting the We-Fi Governing Committee in the allocation and supervision of We-Fi funding as well as communications, advocacy, and learning focused on strengthening opportunities for women entrepreneurs in collaboration with the GC, Implementing Partners and other stakeholders.  Ms. Teleki joined We-Fi in May 2019.  Prior to that, Ms. Teleki worked with the International Finance Corporation leading numerous activities and initiatives focused on small and medium enterprise development in emerging markets around the world.   This included several blended finance, investment and advisory programs, including IFC’s We-Fi program and the Global SME Finance Initiative.  Wendy has an MBA in Finance from the Wharton School of Business and an MA in International Economics from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.

Read the Webinar Summary Note Here