The Women’s Entrepreneurial Centers of Resources, Education, Access, and Training for Economic Empowerment (WECREATE), an initiative of the U.S. Department of State, was launched in Hanoi on Friday, October 21st, 2016. The development of the WECREATE center in Vietnam was announced by U.S. President Barack Obama during his historic trip to the country in May 2016, the U.S. Embassy in Hanoi said in a press release. The inauguration ceremony was attended by U.S. Ambassador Ted Osius, WECREATE Executive Director Nguyen Thi Tuyet Minh, Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry Vice President Doan Duy Khuong, Vietnam Women’s Union Vice President Tran Thi Tuyet and Mr. Ousmane Dione, World Bank Country Director. The WECREATE centers will serve as an entrepreneurial community center for women interested in starting or expanding an existing business. WECREATE | VIETNAM is the second of five centers in the world. “This center will influence many lives, which in turn will help Vietnam to not only continue to achieve growth, but also to achieve growth in a way that sustains and protects what society values – the health of the environment, the well-being of its workers, education and the means of creativity for a young, dynamic, entrepreneurial population,” said Ambassador Osius during the launch. Women entrepreneurs are integral to stable and thriving formal economies, but often face barriers, including gender-based, cultural and social discrimination, so WECREATE centers are designed to be where women can access essential resources needed to overcome these barriers and start or grow their businesses. WECREATE | VIETNAM will help to connect local entrepreneurs with mentors in private companies form and develop business skills and ideas which in turn will feed into the local economies. Members of the WECREATE community have full access to mentor and coaching networks, business building programs, co-working spaces, Incubator SpaceNetworking & Events, visual thinking tools, and day care. The WECREATE center also houses the StartUp Academy, which is acapacity building program for women business-owners which supports them in transitioning from operating in the informal economy to formally registered companies.