Vote for WES!

Women's Enterprise Scotland (WES), the community interest company which is leading the drive to improve rates of women-led businesses, is calling for support to run two Business Creation Courses in the Blairgowrie and Rattray area.

The project has been shortlisted for the 2017 RBS Skills and Opportunities Fund and WES is appealing for votes to get behind the proposal, which will see two business creation courses being delivered to budding female entrepreneurs in the Perthshire area. The courses will provide early-stage business creation support through face-to-face training and via a digital platform. One course will run during the day, with crèche facilities, whilst the other will run in the evening - and participants will receive additional mentoring and support from the Perthshire-based enterprise organisation GrowBiz.

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Jackie Brierton, Vice-Chair of WES and Enterprise Manager for GrowBiz said; “Many women face notable economic challenges and we know that rural-based women face additional employability barriers. This programme will help women in rural communities to generate a business idea or to develop a hobby into a business, which will help them to earn an income in a sustainable manner. The programme is targeted at any woman interested in becoming self-employed or developing a full or part-time business or social enterprise, including unemployed older women, young women due to leave school, migrant women and women with young children.”

Louise Davidson set up her business, Simple Treasures whilst attending a previous WES Business Creation Course

She continued; “GrowBiz’s experience in supporting local enterprise shows that women are more likely to start up in business successfully when supported by other women in an informal learning environment. The programme will help to unlock the economic opportunity represented by female-led businesses, reaching the untapped potential of women in the Perthshire area who want help.”

To gain funding, the business creation project needs to be successful in the public vote, which is now open and runs until midday on 5th May. WES is calling for you to support the project by logging your votes at http://skillsandopportunitiesfund.rbs.com/vote/.

At least 150 women are expected to access information about the business creation process, with more than 70% of course participants starting up a business and around 20% going on to find employment or education opportunities as a result.

Research shows that if more women started up in business at the same rate as men, an additional £7.6bn could be added to the Scottish economy. This is almost equal to the estimated impact which Brexit may have on the Scottish economy.

For further information about Women’s Enterprise Scotland, contact Gaynor Simpson at Vibrant Communications on 07790 104073 or at gaynor@wearevibrant.co.uk

Lynne Hayward, one of the women who attended a recent business creation course with WES, shares her thoughts here:

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