This poses a challenge because each region has its own laws and rules as to how non-profit businesses are established, organised and run.
This challenge however, also provides a wonderful opportunity. Women who wish to start a new club and become a Club Director have the chance to develop and use business skills and experience. 261 Fearless works to empower women and the role of doing this through supporting them to start and run a business, is a crucial extension of our work.
A new Club Director must first establish the correct legal identity for a non-profit in their region. Then there are the steps of completing the necessary paper work, forming a board, creating a constitution, organising insurance, delegating roles and successfully running the business to meet legal obligations and ensure club growth. It’s a potentially overwhelming list, especially for someone with limited business experience. But women do it, they step up and rise to the challenge, hugely increasing their skills and self confidence in the process.
Whilst 261 Fearless can’t carry out all these business requirements for new Club Directors, we can help and encourage them with moral and practical support. From business templates to marketing materials, from expert advice to a friendly listening ear, 261 Fearless wants women to take on these roles to empower themselves through business skills development and then to empower the women in their local community through taking part in running in the clubs they establish.
Club Directors who have succeeded and run thriving clubs look back and tell us they never expected to learn so much. Some have prior business experience but others do not. They have highlighted the importance of having someone there to guide and support them at every step. That working in a team and surrounding yourself with like-minded people with the same passion is a perfect way to succeed. They tell us they quickly develop the courage and confidence to network and look for every opportunity to share their business. They certainly gain IT skills at a fast pace! 261 Fearless has an ongoing education programme for Club Directors and Coaches. Interactive, online workshops with experts are offered every other month and have included topics such as social media use and fundraising and sponsorship to further educate and advise them.
From the USA to the Democratic Republic of Congo, from Italy to India, women are being given the opportunity and support to start a business. They become empowered through developing new skills and gaining the confidence to overcome the challenges they face. As a result, they then have a business structure within which 261 Fearless Clubs can operate in their region and can in turn reach out and empower many women through the power of social, non-competitive running.