Airbnb has expanded its Entrepreneurship Academy to more than 40 partners after its initial launch in 2017 with one partner.
The aim of the program is to bring people from diverse and underrepresented communities to host on Airbnb in conjunction with local partners.
Airbnb and the Nasdaq Enterpreneurial Center help fund partner organizations that in turn support their own entrepreneurship programs.
Organizations participating in the 2023 Academy include UNESCO, the Russell Innovation Center for Entrepreneurs and the Development Bank of Southern Africa.
Alexander Leicht, chief of the section of education for sustainable development, UNESCO, said: “Together with Airbnb we implemented a pilot project aimed at empowering individuals and groups interested in developing tourism products or services based on their cultural heritage or diversity. Through this initiative, participants had access to digital tourism market tools, all in line with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals 2030. Our goal is to promote a sustainable tourism model that is managed by the communities themselves, contributes to the conservation of heritage and cultural diversity and promotes economic growth in areas of Mexico City that have historically faced barriers to tourism development.”
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Airbnb Entrepreneurship Academy alum Eva Welsh said: “I am grateful for the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and Airbnb Academy cohorts that inspired my personal rural entrepreneurship journey. As an academy participant, I learned about hosting homes and experiences on Airbnb in addition to the value of personal host connections with guests through unique stays and stories. The inspiration shared during the academy from several Superhosts and Airbnb ambassadors is the fuel that continues to inspire my unique Glamping Dome launch on our Haliwa-Saponi Native American rural North Carolina family farm.”
Initially launched in South Africa, the Airbnb Entrepreneurship Academy has helped more than 1,100 individuals from diverse and underrepresented backgrounds and extended its reach to other areas including Argentina, Colombia and the United States.