Tajikistan has identified Social Entrepreneurship as a key initiative and sought Niko’s experience and the tools and platform of YWSE to spark women’s ideas and ventures in Tajikistan to both help create economy and solve critical issues they face.
Nicole Bayer, Information Officer in the Public Affairs Section of the US Embassy in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, said: “Ms. Everett’s positivity and warmth transformed even the shyest women into proudly sharing her visions for her future. Her workshops inspired womens throughout Tajikistan to create lasting networks of support and mutual encouragement.”
Niko demonstrated how YWSE leads workshops that support and propel women entrepreneurs into positions of leadership in every sector, and to learn from local entrepreneurs. Locations ranged from the capital of Dushanbe to Isfara, one of the most conservative regions of Tajikistan.
She met local entrepreneurs and NGO leaders to hear about their ventures and challenges, and brainstorm ideas and solutions. Some highlights of her visit included meetings and presentations with alumni of the Special American Business Internship Training, the Women Economic Symposium (WES) participants, the State Department’s Thunderbird MBA program finalists and Sanavbar Sharipove, a USG Alumni and Director of IMON — the largest microfinance bank — who also serves as head of the National Association of Business Women of Tajikistan. Niko presented at 4 universities to gain support to launch YWSE chapters, trained student women leaders and helped them launch their first YWSE gatherings on campuses.
Niko, who is President of Career College of California and also co-founded Girls for a Change, was named in The Silicon Valley Business Journal as one of the “40 Under 40” up-and-comers in the Silicon Valley and as a Community Hero by NPR. She has been recognized by The Women's High Tech Coalition, Fast Company magazine’s Social Capitalist Award, and the Silicon Valley Leadership Group.
Niko notes about the trip, “We are truly inspired about what is possible when we are able to spread the tools and potential impact of Young Women Social Entrepreneurs to a developing country like Tajikistan. The women there have so much potential to create deep and lasting change in their communities and we only hope that YWSE can empower that change.”
“She gave back to Tajikistan by opening schools and building factories for jobs. She empowered women in biz and politics by educating them and by setting example for them as an accomplished biz woman and politician herself. She set out to change the role of women in their homes and in the political realm. She brought to life the values or justice, equality and compassion."
“I had a wonderful life with a family, wife and 4 kids. I worked hard for the development of the country. I opened 1 NGO with 13 centers all over Tajikistan. We developed excellent youth education and gave it to all youth in all areas. I wrote books and taught at the University and trained the next generation of leaders in Tajikistan. When I was 32, I opened a school in my home village named HOPE for students of poor families. The world is a better place because I improved the lives of many generations. I helped change the government here. I was responsible for making the government work for the people and not the people for the government. I was a role model for the country.”