Bridging the gap: HUSTLE WS empowers women entrepreneurs

A local organization works to support women entrepreneurs through a weekly networking event in Downtown Winston-Salem.

WStoday HUSTLE WS women

Women entrepreneur at Sparq co-working space, Innovation Quarter

HUSTLE Winston-Salem via Facebook

A local organization is offering support to women entrepreneurs. HUSTLE Winston-Salem hosts Womenpreneur twice a month on Wednesdays on the second floor of Innovation Quarter. The organization offers free group coaching once a month.

The group works to bridge the gap of entrepreneurial inequality and serve women in marginalized business districts. Six individuals who found they lacked resources to successfully run their businesses started the group.

“All of us are entrepreneurs and happen to be Black,” Magalie Yacinthe, executive director of HUSTLE Winston-Salem said."We needed access to resources and pipeline since we are people fairly connected in the community.”

HUSTLE WS has been in existence since 2015 but started to fully operate in 2016. The group met at various places around the city before securing a permanent space at Sparq at Innovation Quarter, a co-working space that operates daily to accommodate businesses in the community.

Through their partnership with Sparq, HUSTLE WS created Womenpreneur Wednesday— a weekly event that offers a safe space for women and primarily entrepreneurs of color to work in a collaborative and supportive environment.

“It creates a very authentic and intimate community,” Yacinthe said.

Inside the space, you can find multiple offices, phone stations for privacy, a wellness room, and a lactating room for mothers.

“Some of the women are moms and have children and need daycare,” Yacinthe said.
The executive director said the organization is currently in the process of providing childcare for women entrepreneurs that are mothers.

Yacinthe said the organization is currently in the process of providing child care.

To dive even deeper into their mission, HUSTLE Winston-Salem has partnered with a local woman-owned business, Porch Kitchen and Catering Group to sponsor Womenpreneur Wednesday by providing free food to participants.

The organization secured a parking grant so entrepreneurs can park for free. Parking is available in the Link Apartments Parking Deck located at 530 N Patterson Ave. Participants can bring their parking ticket inside for validation.

The executive director said attendance is around 30 people in a day. She is optimistic about the numbers going up in the future, but is focused on cultivating a sense of community while the group is small.

Register to attend the event for free.