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The Ignite Program: Unleashing the Power of Entrepreneurs

This report covers progress to date of the Ignite program as of July 2021. The Ignite program aims to reach 3.9 million entrepreneurs by 2022, directly supporting 131,000 entrepreneurs, with a strong focus on women in Pakistan, Peru and Vietnam.

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What is the Ignite program?

CARE’s Ignite program unleashes the power of growth-oriented entrepreneurs to contribute to resilient, inclusive economies. The program runs in Pakistan, Peru and Vietnam where there are large segments of unserved and underserved micro and small enterprises ready for investment. Ignite aims to reach 3.9 million entrepreneurs by 2022, directly supporting 131,000 entrepreneurs, with a strong focus on women.

Ignite takes a market-based approach to service delivery that is sustainable and scalable, by working closely with local service providers. These partnerships open up access to much-needed financial and digital resources, while building entrepreneurs’ business capacity and networks.

As the COVID-19 pandemic accelerates the move toward a digital economy, women risk being left behind if we do not intervene with support and greater access to digital tools. To ensure these women entrepreneurs can survive and thrive in the digital economy, they need access to three critical enablers: capital, digital tools and skills, and a supportive environment so they can access and use these tools to their fullest. Ignite offers just that.

Ignite is supported by the Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth and is part of Mastercard’s commitment to provide 25 million women entrepreneurs with digital solutions that can help them grow their businesses by 2025.

Through Ignite, entrepreneurs will gain improved access to finance, capacity building and support services. The program also addresses broader socio-cultural norms by promoting an enabling environment for women entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurs will increase their financial security and confidence and stay resilient to shocks so that, ultimately, they can grow their businesses.

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