career

"If she can do it, then so can I."

Brittany, Layne Beachley and Jo Burston (Founder).

By Brittany Lee Waller

When one woman travelled around to schools in Australia and asked young girls what they thought an entrepreneur was, the majority of them had no idea. The very few that did answered, “a man”.

Walking away from that determined to create change and opportunity for women in entrepreneurship; Jo Burston was that one woman, and now the Founder of Rare Birds, a movement inspiring all women to become entrepreneurs by choice.

“I want to see 1 million more women entrepreneurs within the next 10 years, globally. That is our mission at Rare Birds. We want to inspire women. We want to give current entrepreneurs a voice. We want to allow them to tell their story, so that a few years from now, when you ask a young girl what she wants to be when she grows up, it’s not so surprising when she says she wants to own her own company or maybe even change the world.”

Rare Birds begins with a book sharing the stories of Australia’s most influential women entrepreneurs. Featuring honest and jaw dropping accounts, Rare Birds will take you into their real journeys, motivations, sacrifices and what they still dream of achieving. From the likes of Naomi Simson from Red Balloon who began the company out of her house with a $25,000 personal investment and grew it to 46 employees by 2011, to Layne Beachley who encourages women to dream big at Aim For The Stars, and Jodie Fox at Shoes of Prey who personally ran the 3kms from Bondi-to-Bronte in a pair of 4.5 inch gladiator sandals just to prove her shoes are both comfortable and stylish. These are just a few of many women to be featured, some of whom have championed against great adversity.

“I want to break down the barriers that exist for these women, so that we can pave the way for girls to have greater confidence, more government and financial support, access to education resources, mentorship, funding and investment, so that they and their business have the opportunity to grow and succeed,” says Jo.

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“Women are natural networkers, supporters and nurturers, and thrive on the encouragement and direction to make connections with people who can provide the right advice, services and steer them towards success as entrepreneurs. If we can harness the potential of this unique space, then we will garner the increased attention of educators, policymakers, practitioners, the entire startup ecosystem and business leaders. We will give girls opportunities they have never seen before.”

““Women are natural networkers, supporters and nurturers.”

With the book launching in August this year along with inspiringrarebirds.com, Rare Birds calls for all to join the movement and help inspire women to believe that, “If she can do it, then so can I”.

Inspiringrarebirds.com launches essentially as a start-up, aiming to be totally sustainable, while providing a direct gateway for women seeking mentorship, funding, access to a community of like minded people and ability to purchase the book online either for self or to directly gift to a school girl or aspiring women entrepreneur. With the assistance of a number of national and international sponsors and strategic alliances from the start up ecosystem already on board, Rare Birds will deliver content based on these 4 pillars of entrepreneurship, giving every woman access to resources globally. Our platform will connect women with the right mentors and give them basic tools and direction in order to establish and grow their businesses.

Please sign up to inspiringrarebirds.com to follow our journey and keep up to date with our progress to see 1 million more women entrepreneurs within the next 10 years. You will have the ability to pre-purchase and gift a book in the coming weeks via the site.

If you yourself are an entrepreneur or would like to get involved in some way with Rare Birds, please get in touch with [email protected]

Please also follow us on Twitter @inspRAREBIRDS or Facebook.

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