Sky's the Limit Empowers Refugee Entrepreneurs Through Rise Up! Program in Honor of World Refugee Awareness Month

Jun 29, 2023 11:15 AM ET

June 29, 2023 /3BL/ - is proud to announce the most recent grant winners of its Rise Up! program in celebration of World Refugee Day and World Refugee Awareness Month. Rise Up! combines the strengths of Sky's the Limit's virtual mentoring platform, entrepreneurship model, global online community, and grant dollars and directs those strengths specifically towards refugee entrepreneurs.

By reducing barriers and providing streamlined support throughout the entrepreneurial journey, Sky's the Limit works hand in hand with refugees to build and sustain thriving, inclusive communities. Refugees, often resettled in underserved areas, start businesses at a higher rate compared to other groups. The businesses they create also tend to address urgent local needs, and fill gaps in key sectors including professional services, retail, and food.

With its experience in serving 50,000+ underrepresented entrepreneurs, Sky's the Limit has uniquely positioned itself to connect refugee entrepreneurs with skilled volunteers, partners, and the necessary resources for launching and growing local businesses — all made possible through Sky’s the Limit’s unique digital platform.

Thanks to generous support from our partner, Accenture, Sky's the Limit has awarded over $45,000 to refugee entrepreneurs since the launch of the Rise Up! program a year ago.

Sky's the Limit is thrilled to announce the winners of two 2023 Rise Up! pitch competitions — both of which showcased the exceptional talent and resilience of refugee entrepreneurs.

The Rise Up! for UK Refugee Entrepreneurs pitch competition brought together 13 founders who competed for funding to support their social impact start-ups. This event marked the culmination of a workshop series held in collaboration with Accenture, TERN, and Sky's the Limit.

We are pleased to announce the winner of the Rise Up! for UK Refugee Entrepreneurs pitch event:

  • Antony Kimani, Founder of Kwetu Coffee. Based in Glasgow, Scotland, Kwetu Coffee is a socially conscious coffee shop that not only sells ethically sourced coffee but also provides barista training to asylum seekers and refugees. It aims to create a cultural, artistic, and social space within the community.

In celebration of World Refugee Day, Sky's the Limit hosted a second pitch competition in Washington DC, where refugee entrepreneurs competed for and were awarded grants totaling $20,000. The winners are:

  • Rohin Qaduaryn, Founder of Rohin's Business, received first place and a $10,000 grant. Rohin's Business is an Afghan handicraft business that aims to bridge cultures and empower talented artisans, particularly women facing poverty and discrimination enforced by the Taliban.
  • Marvi Sediq, Founder of Osman Kamis, secured second place and a $6,000 grant. Osman Kamis is a clothing brand specializing in fashion-forward traditional clothing for women who embrace their individuality. The brand offers a curated collection of stylish pieces designed to empower and inspire.
  • Rocío Ghattas de Simán, Founder of Yohago, claimed third place and a $4,000 grant. Yohago is an initiative that coaches, trains, and promotes entrepreneurship among artisans and artists while helping them to reflect their identity, culture, and national pride. The project also supports single mothers and women exposed to violence, currently benefiting over 3,000 small entrepreneurs in El Salvador.

Additionally, Sky's the Limit sponsored and participated in the One Journey Festival for the second consecutive year. The One Journey Festival celebrates the talents, stories, and contributions of refugees and displaced individuals worldwide. This family-friendly event brings people together through the shared languages of humanity — art, food, music, dance, storytelling, soccer, fashion, and technology.

"Our goal at Sky's the Limit is to create an inclusive ecosystem where refugee entrepreneurs feel welcomed and supported. We are honored to witness their resilience and determination as they overcome obstacles and build exciting new businesses. The Sky's the Limit community is truly inspired by their courage and innovation, and we will continue to champion their entrepreneurial journeys," said Laura Plato, Chief Operating Officer at Sky's the Limit.

Learn more about the Rise Up! program here.

Sky’s the Limit offers opportunities for traditionally marginalized entrepreneurs – typically those who identify as LGBTQIA+, BIPOC, women, veterans, disabled people, and people from low-income backgrounds – to connect with mentors to come together to foster, grow, and shape modern and future enterprise. The organization has also provided over $450,000 in startup grants and educated tens of thousands of diverse entrepreneurs.

For more information about how to get your company involved in mentoring, please visit

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About is a digital platform that connects young, historically excluded entrepreneurs with one-on-one support from experienced business advisors and mentors, entrepreneurship training, and community-voted startup grants. is a 501(c)3 nonprofit.