The magic of mentoring in a castle

The first of the two camps on our MENA + Europe startup mentoring programme took place last week, and what a jam-packed few days it was! We took 30 enthusiastic entrepreneurs, 12 mentors & experts, and 5 from the enpact team, to the historic town of Bad Belzig, where we were fortunate enough to have beautiful weather and equally beautiful sights. It was wonderful seeing people of all ages from different countries in Europe and the MENA region, people who would probably never have met under any other circumstances, getting to know each other and growing together.

Each fellow got to spend quality time with just their mentors in both the one-on-one and group sessions that took place and we had the fortune of several highly qualified experts – pitch trainer Bianca Praetorius, consultant Tal Uscher and Christine Müller, Manager of eBay’s Customer Insights team – coming in to give workshops on their areas of expertise. We were also joined by Benjamin Wüstenhagen and Dimitri Wolski, who shared their insights on sales analytics and finance. Another highlight was Katzi & Hermann, aka the “dream team”, inspiring the fellows to chase their dreams with their innovative dream development workshop (a particular highlight being watching Katzi speak to them all dressed as Super Santa Claus).

Ted-talk style storytelling? Yep! We had that too. With the topics ranging from clarity, to time, to the power of saying yes and what it means to say no – Fellows, Mentors and Experts alike, gave us food for thought. Fellow Dave Cooper, from the UK, got the video game he’d produced out, which proved to be extremely popular, with people lining up to take turns playing it. He was joined by Fellow Maged Farrag from Egypt, who demonstrated his startup’s snazzy technology showing us the future of VR.

Back in Berlin, we embarked on the startup ecosystem tours and, with three tours to choose from – StartupBootCampBetahaus and MHPLab – there was something for everyone and all participants got to see the awesome new co-working space, The Eckwerk, located in Holzmarkt.

We couldn’t have thought of a better way to inaugurate the new enpact office than by welcoming the Fellows and Mentors to join us for a pizza party to wrap up the week of hard work, high energy and growth for all (the team included!)We would like to thank our generous donors, and we are very much looking forward to doing it all over again with our participants on the West Africa and East Africa programmes!

by Milly Day

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