What is OCI Lab?
OCI Lab Open Collective Intelligence Lab is an online peer to peer incubator for young social entrepreneurs from the MENA region, mainly Tunisia, Morroco, Egypte, Jordan, and Lebanon.
This project is an innovative transnational project supported by Edgeryders aiming at developing a methodology and tools that will reverse the traditional concept of incubation programs and business mentoring, provided usually by business leaders to young people.
The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region combines the world’s youngest population with the world’s highest unemployment and underemployment ratios in the context of poor quality service delivery. More than ever, MENA youth suffer from social and economic exclusion.
Today, the energy of the youth needs to be channeled into behavioral, social, and economic change for the common good.
This is why it’s essential to actively engage and commit youth to a useful purpose to bring hope, stability, and sustainable growth in MENA.
Why a mentoring program?
Du to the high rate of unemployment in the MENA, region entrepreneurship has been presented as the first alternative to make a living for these young people.
Governments, funders, and many NGO’s offer incubation and acceleration programs for young social entrepreneurs. These programs have, without a doubt, a real impact on reducing the unemployment rate. But none of them have created a real supportive ecosystem for the entrepreneurs, according to the social entrepreneurs interviewed by our team in November 2018.
Hence was born the idea to offer a human-centric incubation program in which we support social entrepreneurs to make sure first of all that the entrepreneurship adventure is aligned with their professional and personal perspectives. And then evaluate the feasibility of their social business idea and if it solves a real issue for the community.
During the first two months, the 12 participants / Project leaders will attend individual and collective online labs
The labs last between 60 and 90 minutes and will be conducted by mentors or and OCI Lab team members.
Each online lab has a specific topic to support the young entrepreneur from concept to adoption.
1.1 Lab 1: Identify the business /Social Problem
1.2 Lab 2: Define your solution and your project value proposition
1.3 Lab 3: Set up your action plan and draft your Lean Business Model Canvas
Lab materials: Action plan template, LBMC template
1.4 Lab 5: Matching Lab ( contributors and Project Leaders)
The process involves 2 main actors
Every project leader will be introduced to selected contributors so they can deliver the MVP on the expected deadline according to the action plan set by the end of Lab 3.
1.5 Lab 5: Validate your POC
1.6 Lab 6: Customer Validation
1.7 Lab 7: Financial Model Validation
Lab materials: Financial model template
1.8 Lab 8: Prepare your pitch deck
Mentors do not need to be qualified trainers or experts. They need to be able to listen and ask questions that will challenge the mentee to help them develop their project idea and their skills.
Mentors will also prepare their mentees to manage their adventure better by :
- Connect them with the right people who may help them
- Share with them the opportunity to develop new networks of contacts
- Recommend an internship or training to acquire new skills
- Help them refine their strategy according to the market trends to get access to funding opportunities
Want to take part in this new project as a mentor? And support meaningful projects that would bring positive changes to communities in the MENA region and, ultimately, the world.
Please get in touch with us and comment bellow