Over the last couple of weeks, 138 women have embarked on what we hope will be an exciting, empowering, and rewarding mentoring journey together. After calling for initial registrations of interest back in July and growing our membership, we have been working hard to develop the WOMID mentoring process and develop a reliable system for matching mentors and mentees.
Matching has been an interesting process: fascinating and frustrating in equal measures. On registration we asked everyone to fill in a form detailing their areas of work and interests, level of academic and practical experience within their field, and their hopes and expectations from WOMID and a mentoring relationship. It was so lovely to get to know they all from reading what they had written.
We spent weeks analysing and digesting this information in order to find the best possible match for each of our members. Some had requested to be matched with someone who worked in the same discipline, others in the same geographical region or in a specific professional sector like policy or advocacy. Everyone who registered has such a wealth of experience and something valuable to bring to WOMID. We wanted to do this justice by creating matches that would inspire and support everyone. In a few cases, a perfect match was immediately apparent. In others, we moved people around more times than we could count. We had post-it notes coming out of our ears, colour-coded spreadsheets of unbelievable proportions. But, with all the emails now sent out giving each of our members information on their matches and with great plans for building our community hub in the near future, it has all been totally worth it.
And we hope to continue to grow!
We are now taking registrations on a rolling basis so if you are not already part of WOMID, please sign up and continue to spread the word. We’ll be connecting and matching people whenever a suitable match is available.
We have some fantastic plans for our blog with great stories, anecdotes, advice and experiences to be shared by our members, discussion spaces to conquer complex and controversial topics, and anything else our members want to see and explore. You can sign up to receive these directly to your inbox at the bottom of this page. We’ll also excitingly soon be launching our online community hub where members can participate in discussion forums, post and search for job or funding opportunities, and get involved in additional Peer to Peer mentoring. We can’t wait!
We are very excited to be part of such a great community of women and hope that it will provide everyone with the support and energy to grow and develop both personally and professionally. We are always open to suggestions, so if you have any ideas, please drop us a line.