Dungannon Enterprise Centre gets support for female entrepreneurs
A local enterprise agency has been awarded over £20,000 in grant funding from RBS, the parent company of Ulster Bank, to help develop female entrepreneurship.
Dungannon Enterprise Centre has received the support from the RBS Inspiring Women in Enterprise fund for its ‘InnovateHer Mid-Ulster’ programme, an initiative designed to encourage women into business.
The InnovateHer programme is a first for this region – bringing women’s networking and skills development together in one tailored programme. Project highlights will include mentoring and the ‘Inspire Me’ masterclass, where participants will have the opportunity to meet with experienced female entrepreneurs to hear their start-up stories.
Shauna Burns, Head of Mid-Ulster & Fermanagh Business Centre, Ulster Bank, said: “This is a fantastic achievement for Dungannon Enterprise Centre and evidence of their strong support for local innovations.
Through our BusinessWomenCan initiative, Ulster Bank has been a proud supporter of female entrepreneurship and I’m confident that this funding will help in the development of strong local businesses in the future.”
Twenty-five women, from across the Dungannon, Cookstown and Magherafelt Council areas, will be taken on a journey to explore entrepreneurship, developing business ideas and pitching them to a panel of experts. Each of them will create a feasible business model and develop key business skills. They will all gain practical experience through off-site visits to role model entrepreneurs’ premises.
Denise Murtagh, Business Development Manager, Dungannon Enterprise Centre, said: “Women taking part in InnovateHer will benefit from RBS Inspiring Women in Enterprise funding by being able to create their own opportunities and learn the skills and knowledge to take advantage of them.”
“The funding will pay for master classes and experiential learning experiences through ‘off-site’ best practice visits to role-model entrepreneurs.”
The programme aims to promote entrepreneurship as a career choice for women, as the gender gap in Northern Ireland entrepreneurship shows no signs of closing. The participants from the Mid-Ulster region of Northern Ireland (Dungannon, Cookstown and Magherafelt Council areas) will directly benefit from the programme. It is anticipated that the use of social media to share the journey of the project with others will ensure that its reach is greatly enhanced. Women from these areas are encouraged to contact Denise Murtagh on to find out more about taking part.
Launched at the end of 2012 with a funding pot of £1.5 million, RBS Inspiring Women in Enterprise grant funding is for not-for-profit organisations to run programmes which help inspire women to explore their enterprise potential, and hopefully set up in business. So far the programme has enabled the funded organisations to support over 3,600 women, creating 430 businesses.
Ulster Bank supports female entrepreneurship through the Business Women Can initiative. More information can be found through smallbusinesscan.com