In this mentoring video presented by Bahar Kumar, we dive deep into what entrepreneurial communities look like and to also discover the impact/need for building such spaces. Baharserves as Director at Impact Hub Kathmandu‘, formerly Nepal Communitere. In this role, she leads a vibrant community-based innovation hub that supports ambitious changemakers, enabling them to transform their ideas into successful ventures. With a deep commitment to empowering visionaries Bahar employs methodologies like human-centered design to gain profound insights into the communities’ needs. By understanding these needs she strives to design innovative and relevant solutions that address pressing challenges. Her expertise in community engagement and innovative problem-solving has been instrumental in fostering positive change.

Through her multifaceted experiences and qualifications, Bahar Kumar exemplifies a dedicated leader and advocate for social innovation. Her work at Impact Hub Kathmandu showcases her unwavering commitment to empowering entrepreneurs and catalyzing positive social impact. As she mentions, “it is through entrepreneurship that we can build impact at scale; to question how we can do good in this time of real need in our world and that is through scale. ImpactHub is making an intentional effort to grow in the Global South and to consider who we want to bring in our products and services to have a voice and a balance”. The act of scaling means building a collaborative community, providing entrepreneurial support, offering physical and virtual infrastructure, connecting, and supporting the impact entrepreneurial ecosystem.

One of the main topics covered in this video is the funding crisis and what it means to have a business model not dependent or driven by donors; instead to be self-sustainable. In order to be a sustainable organization one needs a business model to understand how to profit and survive as a business by reinvesting that money into the community or into the products. As Impact Entrepreneurs, the objective is to consistently reinvest in impactful projects, and to ensure one is on the right path. Such a first step begins with utilizing the Lean Business Canvas model and to start asking yourselves two essential questions: who are the ideal champions to support the organization’s work financially, and, how can your team ensure you have the right individuals on your team to drive success.

(Balancing the Pillars of Sustainability)

(Lean Business Canvas Model)

By looking at the images above one can better understand the steps for attaining sustainability. The lean business model demonstrates how “…sustainability is survival around balancing the money that comes in and the money that comes out…” as mentioned by Bahar. The model can be used for a product or service because ultimately it all relates to the problem and the people you are serving.

Once you have a visual understanding of who you want as key players and what stations people should be at, the next step is onboarding, and this begins with understanding how to communicate one’s work. Communication tools such as social media platforms, slide decks/pitch decks, videos, and concept notes are all great tools to organize the way you communicate, but more importantly, the how is where we need to focus our attention towards. Stories of human transformation and testimonials engage the masses because a personal narrative and testimony provides hope and inspiration as they are relatable, emotionally evocative, and provide a sense of hope or inspiration. Through these stories, people can identify and feel a sense of belonging based on real-life experiences. These narratives show individuals overcoming challenges and achieving personal growth or success therefore, motivating others to take action.

Makerspaces should organize a structure that enables individuals to understand there are a lot of opportunities for bright young people within the country. When offering meaningful roles and responsibilities, there is a shift in power from traditional hierarchical structures to a more inclusive and equitable environment fostering authentic partnerships.

Please take a moment to watch Bahar’s makerspace mentoring video below.

Looking for more inspiration on Critical Making? Check out more resources HERE.


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