Thursday, July 29, 2010

New support for business women in Palestine

WITH just three per cent of the business-owned community in Palestine being made up of women CIPE (Centre for International Private Enterprise) is working hard to re-dress the balance.

Over the next few weeks CIPE is releasing a series of success story video clips in which partners talk about their successes in advocating for local entrepreneurship initiatives.

In Palestine these private sector organisations are advocating for policies that remove barriers to create a more level playing field for entrepreneurs to create the jobs and opportunities the region needs.

In this video listen to how the Executive Director of the Palastinian Busines Women Forum (BWF) plans to increase the numbers of women entrepreneurs throughout the region.

Maggie O'Carroll, Executive Director for Train 2000, said: "In so manmy part of the world the numbers of women entrepreneurs are still very low and often it is because women are not given the right resources they need to help them overcome the barriers they face.

"It is interesting to see the work that is being done by BWF in Palestine to help tackle this very important and ongoing issue."

At Train 2000 we offer a variety of FREE services to women throught the Merseyside and Greater Manchester areas to help them into self-employment. And, with the development of the new Women's International Centre for Economic Development (WICED) which is set to open in the Baltic Triangle area of Liverpool later this year it is anticipated that an even greater number of women-led businessess will be developed in the region over the forthcoming years.

Recruitment success for Stockport businesswoman


WHEN the firm Lyndsey Meredith was working for underwent a huge restructure it was just a matter of time before she took the steps to become her own boss and now she says ‘there is no going back.’

At 26-years-old the Sociology graduate, who now runs her own recruitment consultancy, Meredith Consultancy Services is delighted with her new venture which she officially launched on 1st June, making substantial profits in just her first month.

“I am very focussed and keen to do well” said Lyndsey, who formally worked as a branch manager for Reed, “already I am in-undated with clients looking for work and have got a lot of businesses on my books.”

Having worked in Stockport since graduating from Manchester University Lyndsey has already built up good contacts in the area which she says is helping immensely with her new business.

She now offers her recruitment consultancy services throughout Stockport, Cheshire and the North West, across numerous sectors such as HR, accounts, administration, IT and many more.

She said; “Previously I worked as a branch manager and was managing a team of seven. Now that I run my own business I get to do all aspects of the job including management and recruitment. I am thoroughly enjoying being my own boss and can’t ever imagine returning to employment again.”

After leaving Reed following a restructure of the organisation, Lyndsey moved on to work for a small recruitment agency in Salford Quays – but left in April this year to start up her own business.

“It’s been a busy few months” said Lyndsey, “I left my job in April and then got married in May and went on my honeymoon. Since then I have been doing everything to make a success of my business including advertising, cold calling, sales and the hard work has really paid off.”

Prior to starting up her business Lyndsey came along to Train 2000 after a former colleague, who had also become self-employed, recommended the organisation to her.

Lyndsey received free help and advice from Train 2000 under the business start-up programme.

“Train 2000 really was a great help to me” said Lyndsey, “although I had previously put together business plans in my jobs, I had a lot of questions about the financial side of running my own business and my adviser really helped me with this.

“I also went on the Tax and NI course which Train 2000 runs and this really did teach me a lot.”

Lyndsey says it is nice to know that there is always somewhere to turn if she needs a question answering and she has also attended a number of networking events with Train 2000.

Lyndsey has great plans to move her business forward and by the end of the year hopes to take on two new members of staff.

If you would like to find out more about Meredith Consultancy Services please email Lyndsey at enquiries@meredithcs.co.uk or visit her website at www.meredithcs.co.uk

And, if you are interested in finding out more about the free business support services being offered to women in the Stockport area please visit www.train2000.org.uk

Entrepreneurs of the future visit women's enterprise centre site



BUDDING young entrepreneurs of the future donned hard hats to see for themselves the progress being made on the £5.3m Women’s International Centre for Economic Development (WICED) being built in Liverpool.

Children and parents from St Cecilia’s Catholic Infants and Nursery Primary School in Tuebrook visited the site in the Baltic Triangle area of Liverpool to experience first hand the exciting new development due to open later this year.

The centre, the first of its kind globally, is being developed by Liverpool women’s enterprise organisation Train 2000. It will help female entrepreneurs launch and development their businesses, as well as housing an international research centre.

“It is fantastic to see so many children and their parents visiting the site to see how work is progressing,” said Maggie O’Carroll, chief executive of WICED.

“The centre will be fantastic when it opens and we hope that by seeing it being built, children and their parents will realise the incredible investment being made in their city. We also hope that it will help to raise their aspirations for the future and realise that anything is possible.”

Train 2000 has been working successfully with St Cecilia’s Infants School since March as part of its ‘School Gates’ project. The project involves workers from Train 2000 making links with parents at the school gate to help them to widen their career options, increase their confidence and consider self employment as a way forward.
Elizabeth van de Waal, head teacher at St Cecilia’s Infants School, said: “Everyone has been very excited about visiting the WICED site; it is a lovely opportunity to see the development first-hand and will really bring the project alive for our children and their parents.

“We plan to study the economic world and the importance of enterprise during the next academic year and visiting the site of a centre which will be completely devoted to women’s enterprise fits in perfectly.”

She added: “We are also delighted with the ‘School Gates’ project and feel that Train 2000 has made a fantastic contribution to our school by engaging with parents in such a positive way.”

The ‘School Gates Enterprise Project’ is being administered by Liverpool Vision. Head of Enterprise Nicola Gleave commented: “This project is really important as it is crucial that we engage children in order to inspire future entrepreneurship.”
Work on WICED is expected to be completed by December 2010 – providing a multitude of services to women throughout the region and creating thousands of jobs over the coming years.

It is being developed by Train 2000, following a £2.4 million investment from the Northwest European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) programme – part of a £5.3 million finance package.

The ERDF programme is backed by the Programme Monitoring Committee (PMC) – a group of senior representatives from across the region. The group was formed to monitor, oversee and advise on the delivery of the programme and improved invaluable to the development of the new fund.

Anyone who is interested in finding out more should contact Train 2000 on 0151 236 6601 or email info@train2000.org.uk. Alternatively visit the web site at www.train2000.org.uk

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

New 'Slimming' Business for Knowsley Mum


WHEN former accounts clerk Sally Carr was made aware of a brand new opportunity to start up a slimming world franchise it gave her just the opening she was looking for to become her own boss.

“Since having my little girl I had been working fulltime” said Sally, “and putting her in nursery was a complete nightmare, she was crying all the time and I was just going through the motions of being in work, so I knew that I needed to do something different.”

And that’s when Sally took the plunge to become her own boss.

“I never thought I would get the funding for it” she said, “so when I did I was absolutely delighted. I love what I do now and it has made such a difference to my life. I have got the best of both worlds, I can enjoy time with my daughter, but I can still go to work.”

Sally, who is from the Knowsley area, said she was particularly keen to open up a slimming world franchise because having gained weight during her pregnancy herself, she knew how difficult it was to diet and felt she could empathize with her members.

She said: “Because I have been through this process myself, I felt that I was in a much better position to advise my members and they seem very comfortable knowing they are talking to some one who has faced the same difficulties they have.”

As well as having a two-year-old daughter Paige, Sally is now pregnant with her second child and says now that she is her own boss it will be much easier to return to work.

“I run two classes” said Sally, one on a Wednesday evening and one on Saturday mornings, so even with two children this will much easier to manage.”

Once 30-year-old Sally made the decision to start up her own business she came along to Train 2000 for free help and advice under the business start-up programme. “I had never heard of Train 2000 before” added Sally, but I saw an advert in the Kirkby Extra and decided to go along.

“I had never put a business plan together before and I really couldn’t have done it without my adviser Amanda, she was brilliant and really easy to talk to.”

Sally runs classes at Christchurch in Bootle at 10am every Saturday and the County Methodist Church on Ludlow Avenue, off County Road each Wednesday at 6pm. Classes are currently well attended but as Sally says ‘there’s always room for more’. To find out more about slimming world or to book your place in one of Sally’s classes please call her on 07952 237 279.

And, to find out more about the free opportunities available to women through Train 2000 please call 0151 236 6601 or email info@train2000.org.uk

Incubator Space for New Rural Businesses

Source: http://billingsgazette.com/news/state-and-regional/wyoming/article_91cf7bbe-921e-11df-9497-001cc4c03286.html

A NEW project has been launched in a remote area of America in a bid to provide incubator space to new businesses in a rural community.

The small business incubator is taking root in Lovell, a Big Horn Basin community of about 2,350 people and the incubator will provide assistance to local entrepreneurs in a 2,500-square-foot-building owned by the town and being managed by Lovell Inc, a local community development group.

“In a rural area, such as we are, we know our best potential for business growth is through individual entrepreneurs,” said Sue Taylor, executive director of Lovell Inc.
“The chances of getting somebody to move here are not the greatest. But we know we can grow our own.”

Once completed, the incubator will have three tenant spaces and a “flex” area. The Lovell project got a boost from a $330,598 Community Readiness Grant from the Wyoming Business Council.

Lovell Inc. also plans to apply for assistance for the Wyoming Women’s Foundation to run a business plan contest for women. Money will be sought to offset incubator rent for one woman older than 50 and one younger than 30.

Maggie O’Carroll, Executive Director for Train 2000, said; “this project appears to be an excellent opportunity for people in this rural community to have space to start up their own business – and it looks particularly promising for women who are thinking about becoming entrepreneurs.

“At Train 2000 we understand and value the need for incubator space, which enables many women to access affordable premises in the early stages of business start up.”

Currently at Train 2000 we provide business units (incubator space) to women at our Manchester Office. At a very affordable cost, space can be rented on a weekly or monthly basis and as well as being located in a city centre location, facilities include broadband connection, full-time reception cover and availability of conference rooms and meeting space.

And, incubator space will soon be available at our brand new Women’s International Centre for Economic Development (WICED) based in the Baltic Triangle area of Liverpool, when it opens in January 2011.

For further information about the business units we have available please call 0151 236 6601 or email info@train2000.org.uk

Train 2000's 8 Women and a Dog Raced for Life


EIGHT BRAVE WOMEN from Train 2000's staff team took on the 'Race for Life' Challenge in aid of Cancer Research. Joining thousands of other local women to complete the sponsored 5k around Sefton Park on Sunday 18th July 2010, our team smashed their £300 target for the worthy cause. Pledges are still coming in so we will announce the final figure soon. It is not too late to add on your donation if you would like to via our 'Just Giving' site by clicking here.

The team including (pictured left to right) Operations Manager Lynn Kelly, Data Input Clerk Sandra Sipaviciute, Senior Administrator Debbie Connerty, Administration Co-ordinator Laura Anderson, Office Administrator Rachel Seddon, Engagement Worker Jo Dunn, Development Manager Lisa McMullen and Enterprise Manager Jackie Williams were lucky enough to meet Radio City's Rick Vaughn at the event and even got a shout out on the radio. Click to listen.

The team mascot for the day was Tilly the dog who came with Enterprise Manager Jackie Williams, and even received her own medal for completing the race. A full album of photographs from the event can be viewed at our flickr site.

For more information about Women's Enterprise support agency Train 2000 visit www.train2000.org.uk

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Anfield Friends Find Fashion for New Business



IF you’ve ever walked down the street and wondered ‘where did she get that outfit from’ well now you can find out – thanks to a newly launched business by Julie Jones and Kate Morris.

www.fashionfinds.co.uk was launched by the two friends earlier this year and features photographs of people from all walks of life as well as a description of their outfits and links to the retailers they were purchased from.

The idea behind ‘Fashionfinds.co.uk’ was born out of the realisation by Julie and Kate that most of us like to people watch and are interested and intrigued by the outfits that others are wearing.

Julie said: “We got the idea because we realised how much we all like to look at other peoples outfits and we were bored of reading the same old magazines featuring stick thin girls.

“Through our website we wanted to show that girls of all sizes look good – it’s all about real life fashion. The website is designed to celebrate peoples’ ability to put outfits together with ease and to help give inspiration and ideas to others so they can do the same.

Julie, 27 and Kate, 29, first met at John Moores University where they were studying for psychology degree – Kate went on to work in the area of mental health whilst Julie became a learner mentor. And, for the time being, whilst the business builds up they are both remaining in their jobs.

“At the moment we do this in our spare time” said Kate “but things are going extremely well and we are hoping that soon we will be able to dedicate all of our time to the business.”
She added: “Fashionfinds.co.uk has concentrated on Liverpool to kick off the website but will soon be branching out to other Cities across the UK. So not only can you see whose wearing what in Liverpool you can also see whose wearing what in other cities in the UK.”

In order to find photographs for their website Julie and Kate take pictures at shopping centres, on nights out and at concerts – and soon they are hoping to move to other cities including Manchester, Birmingham and London.

“People are usually really willing to have their photographs taken and to chat to us” continued Julie, “no one has ever refused to be on the website, most people like the idea and they can go online and view themselves on our site.”

Julie and Kate, who are both from the Anfield area of Liverpool, received help and support from women enterprise agency Train 2000 and the local enterprise initiative Step Clever to set their business up. They also received a business start up grant for help in financing equipment needed for Fashionfinds.

Kate said: “The help we received from Train 2000 and Stepclever was great. It was really helpful to be able to sit down with an adviser who could help us put our business plan together.”

To find out more about Fashionfinds or if you have already been photographed by Julie or Kate and want to see your picture, visit www.fashionfinds.co.uk
And, to find out more about Train 2000 call 0151 236 6601 or visit www.train2000.org.uk

Friday, July 9, 2010

Realising the Rewards Hidden in Your Data

Local business women gathered at Train 2000 Headquarters in Liverpool to listen to an engaging talk on 'Realising the Rewards Hidden in Your Data'.

Kathryn May of 'Matrix Analitix' who set up her own business specialising in data analysis and business consultancy with help from Train 2000 was the guest speaker. She gave insightful tips on:

-Defining Your Business
-Business Intelligence - Looking at the Data
-Business Growth & Expansion - Using your KPI (Key Performance indicators) to drive your business forward

The business women were also invited to network with one another and given helpful networking hints by Training Manager Bernie Cox.

The comments from the evening included:
“Very informative, useful info, inspiring how data can help move business forward. Want to learn more”

“Useful event. Kathryn’s talk was very informative. Would be interested in a workshop”

“Very helpful. Both speakers were very knowledgeable.”

“Great evening. Really enjoyed both the talks. Both Useful.”

“Speaker was excellent! Helped me think about other stuff I need to do. Thanks!”

“Very in depth. Looking forward to attending other events”

If you would like to know more about the networking opportunities available through Train 2000 then call our team on 0151 236 6601 or email info@train2000.org.uk

If you would like to find out more about the support that Kathryn can offer to businesses contact her via: kathryn_may@matrixanalitix.co.uk or call 07969 815 567.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

MP Visits WICED Development


LOCAL Member of Parliament Louise Ellman took time out earlier this month to survey the progress being made on the multi-million pound development of the brand new Womens International Centre for Economic Development (WICED).The Riverside MP was joined by a group of leading women from throughout the area on a site visit to the development which is based in the Baltic Triangle area of Liverpool.

“This is a truly ambitious scheme” said the Labour MP, “and one which will have real and lasting impact for women from all walks of life and I am extremely proud that it is being developed right here in Liverpool.”

Also visiting the site, which is now into its third month of development, were WICED’s Chief Executive Officer Maggie O’Carroll and Operations Director Helen Millne.

Maggie said: “This latest visit to the site was a great opportunity for those involved to see just how work is progressing and to give them a real feel for what the centre promises to be.

“We were delighted to be joined by MP Louise Ellman and were also pleased to take along Gill Moglione who leads the trustee board on the development of WICED. In a previous role Gill was pivotal in the redevelopment of Blackburne House and we are now privileged to have her on the team, providing an advisory and leadership role in this new venture.”

Sue Oshikanlu, expert in financial management, who has been an instrumental member of the WICED development team from the outset, also went along to visit the site. Sue has been responsible for helping to steer a financial package to secure the £5.3million development.

WICED, is being developed by Train 2000, following a £2.4 million investment from the Northwest European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) programme – part of a £5.3 million finance package.

The ERDF programme is backed by the Programme Monitoring Committee (PMC) – a group of senior representatives from across the region. The group was formed to monitor, oversee and advise on the delivery of the programme and improved invaluable to the development of the new fund.

Flo Clucas, ERDF FMC member and President of WICED, said: “there is a huge economic potential in women’s enterprise which needs to be encouraged and supported. WICED will be the first such centre in the world which sets out to do exactly that.

“Creation and growth of more enterprise led by women is crucial to ensuring economic growth in the Northwest and WICED will provide the right conditions to help women entrepreneurs achieve their goals.”

Work on the new building is expected to be completed by December 2010 – when the centre will open, providing a multitude of services to women throughout the region and creating thousands of new jobs over the forthcoming years.

For further information about WICED please visit www.train2000.org.uk/wiced

Photo Caption – MP Comes to Visit
L to R: Gill Moglione (WICED trustee), Helen Millne (Operations Director, WICED), Louise Ellman (Labour MP for Riverside) Maggie O’Carroll (Chief Executive Officer of WICED) Sue Oshikanlu (WICED Trustee)

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

New Business Becomes 'Saving Grace' for Liverpool Grandmother


FOR Jan Mullen becoming self-employed was about much more than simply running her own business in fact she describes it as her ‘saving grace’.

The 41-year-old Natural Health Practitioner started her business The Therapeutic Garden earlier this year - she uses natural healing and holistic therapies to help her clients tackle any health problems or to find new ways to relax.

Jan, who is mum and grandmother to her two grown-up children and one grandson, decided to become self-employed after battling with severe depression – but she says that becoming her own boss is the best thing she has ever done.

“I don’t see this as running a business” said Jan, “I absolutely love what I do so it’s not like working at all. I have always been interested in natural healing and I enjoy passing on these techniques to my clients and helping them to use the knowledge to change their lives.”

Over the recent months Jan has spent time building up her business by networking with fellow graduates from the Liverpool School for social Entrepreneurs, delivering therapeutic services to local residents in the Anfield and Breckfield area supported by the Anfield, Breckfield Community Council. She has also provided information to other health practitioners; and is now about to join the team of Therapists at the Liverpool Wellbeing Centre.

“I am so delighted with how everything is going” continued Jan, “and gaining work at the Liverpool Wellbeing Clinic has really given me a boost, it’s a lovely environment and somewhere I can really make a difference.”

Jan, who is from Anfield, came along to Train 2000 for help and advice in starting up her business. She worked on a one-to-one basis with an adviser who helped put her business plan together. Jan also received support under the local enterprise initiative Step Clever and received one of the Step Clever business start-up grants.

She said: “I thoroughly enjoyed working with Train 2000 to start up my business and I was extremely pleased with the help I received. The staff there are fantastic and it’s like being around friends.”

Jan describes her venture into self employment as an ‘incredible journey’ – and believes that it has helped to increase her confidence and change her life forever.

And, after three years of studying Jan will soon complete a diploma in nutritional healing and is about to embark on a degree course. “I always thought that studying was something I couldn’t do” said Jan, “but I have thoroughly enjoyed being a student and have thrown myself into it. I am really looking forward to doing my degree and just can’t believe how far I have come and how much my life has turned around.”

To find out more about The Therapeutic Garden and the services on offer, Jan can be contacted on 07852 931870 or email info@therapueticgarden.co.uk Alternatively you can visit Jan’s website at www.therapeuticgarden.co.uk

FREE Accountancy Software for Small Businesses


IF you run your own business and think you could benefit from some FREE accountancy software then look no further.

You can now download, completely free of charge, the TAS basics accountacy software package from www.tassoftware.co.uk/free

The programme, which is ideal for start ups and small businesses, is simple to use and can help businesses to keep a track of their cash.

At a glance the TAS will enable you to see how your business stands - showing who you owe money to and who owes you money.

The free download available also has no obligations and no time limits. To find out more visit www.tassoftware.co.uk/free or call 0800 694 0220.

If you are self-employed and need helping with managing your business finances call us at Train 2000 on 0151 236 6601 and book a place on one of our bookkeeping courses.