Prabha Dublish, Cofounder of Womentum

Who are you?

I’m Prabha. I was born in India but grew up in Seattle. I started my first nonprofit at age 16 in high school. I then went to Babson College to study analytics and started another nonprofit called Womenutm. Womentum is a pay it forward nonprofit crowdfunding platform that allows anyone in the world to donate to women entrepreneurs around the world. I’m a 21 year old social entrepreneur hoping to find innovative ways to empower women around the world.

Can you tell us the story of your business from idea to where you are now?

Womentum was born out of a summer project I did after freshman year. After spending on year in business school I was intrigued with how alumni from Babson College were able to use the resources available to start successful businesses that changed their lives. But at the same time, I wondered what entrepreneurship looked like in communities where they didn’t have the same access to opportunities as we did in college. So I travelled to Delhi, India to meet with women entrepreneurs in villages who were starting small scale ventures. It was clear to me that entrepreneurship is a powerful driver of change in these communities, but the lack of financial and community support was startling to me.

Inspired by the stories of the women I had met in India, I worked with Derek and Aaron to build Womentum. When we started, we had one entrepreneur from one nonprofit partner. Over the past year, thanks to the Babson WIN Lab and other incredible resources, we have grown to supporting 35 women entrepreneurs in 5 different countries. We’ve also built out a corporate sponsor model to raise additional funding for our entrepreneurs. Womentum was an idea that was built out of a Babson College dorm room and has now been nationally recognized by media sites like NBC Universal and HuffPost.

What has been your biggest failure or struggle?

I’ve struggled with being confident in myself over the years. Being a female founder who is only 21 years old isn’t easy, especially when the social impact sector has a lot of incredible people who have more years of experience than I’ve been alive. Working to build my credibility has been crucial and remind myself that I’m meant to be here is such an important part of my work.

And what has been your biggest achievement or success?

Pitching in front of 250 people, including the Mayor of Boston, at Mass Innovation Nights and winning Fan Favorite. As someone who used to shy away from public speaking, this was a huge accomplishment for me.

What’s your must read business book?

The hard thing about hard things by Ben Horowitz

Who’s your most inspirational CEO or founder?

Sheryl Sandberg

And can you tell us something weird or interesting about yourself?

I was born without a right pulmonary artery!