Friday, November 25, 2011

Parcours Offer 'Building Cultural Competance' Training at 54 St James Street

Parcours invite you to a one day interactive seminar 'Building Cultural Competence within your working practices'.

Providing greater awareness of the impact we have on others through our everyday behaviours in the role of manager or employee.
The workshop aims;
• To introduce participants to the key concepts of cultural identity development
• To introduce the principles required to operate from a perspective which embraces diversity
• To guide participants to tools that can cultivate personal development and awareness

Date: Monday 16th January 2012
Time: 10.00am – 4.00pm
Venue: 54 St James Street Liverpool Merseyside L1 0AB

The session is facilitated by an experienced facilitator recognised nationally in their field of expertise

Price includes:
• Refreshments & Light Lunch
• Certificate of participation for you individual CPD

Total Investment
Sector of Civil Society organisations £75
Statutory / public / other £140
Early bird booking discount available!
Tel: 0151 706 8138

The Women's Organisation and Stepclever Enjoy Floating Grace Maiden Voyage

The Floating Grace – a 70ft long, 13.5ft wide canal boat – set sail on her maiden voyage yesterday. Onboard to enjoy the ride were local business women from North Liverpool and South Sefton. The networking event with a difference was hosted by local enterprise agency The Women's Organisation thanks to sponsorship from Stepclever.

The barge set sail at Mann Island Basin and the business women enjoyed a leisurely three hour journey through the new Liverpool Canal Link past the Three Graces and taking in the other historic city sites on the way.

In order to establish the Floating Grace, the Vauxhall Neighbourhood Council (VNC), one of the city’s leading social enterprises, received a £20,000 grant from Stepclever which helps start up businesses and existing organisations in North Liverpool and South Sefton grow and develop.

The business women were given a brief history of the project before setting off, then handed over to female skipper Jackie to navigate the waterway while high-lighting some local points of interest.

The Women's Organisation's Bernie Cox gave the women a whistle stop tour of top 'networking hints and tips' before setting them off to put the tips into practice over delightful canapes.

Enterprise Enabler from The Women's Organisation Ali McGrath then gave a motivational talk to the women, encouraging them to support each other to iron out common issues for businesses in their community. The Women's Organisation are hosting a 'Women's Business Forum' particularly for the women running businesses in North Liverpool on Monday 5th December from 6pm-8pm. The forum, which will be held at 54 St James Street L1 0AB, will be an opportunity for local business women to meet with representatives from Liverpool City Council and Stepclever Business Neighbourhoods team to discuss common causes of concern, and to look at positive action that can be taken.

To finish off, Enterprise Director Jackie Williams offered her thanks to the crew and Stepclever for their help in putting together the event, and 2 lucky business women won a box of chocolates and a bottle of bubbly.

Comments left by the women who were at the event included:

"Just amazing! Fabulous venue, fabulous network. Thank you."

"Always had a kick in my step regarding business, but I fell more inspired than ever. Looking forward to the next event."

"Great venue, Great people. Glad I came."

"Thought it was a great informal networking session. Got me inspired about making the most of others services to help my business grow."

"Fantastic venue! Great opportunity to network. Brilliant!"

"Fabulous idea to have an event on a barge. Great to meet the other ladies."

"Fantastic - really enjoyed the whole experience. Good opportunity to speak to women who have their own business. Thank you."

"I very nearly never came today, but I am so glad I did. I have really enjoyed it and look forward to the next event."

"Excellent event. Very novel. Lovely Atmosphere. Lovely food and staff."

"I enjoyed the event. Will definitely attend other women in business events."

"A big thank you to all who put this event together. It was extremely helpful, educational and a wonderful evening. I met some great like minded people who I look forward to working with in the future."

For more information on the 'Women's Business Forum' or future networking opportunities with The Women's Organisation, contact our team on 0151 706 8111 or

And if you would like to find out more about how Stepclever have supported businesses in North Liverpool and South Sefton please visit

Photographs from the event can be viewed in our flickr album.

Stockport Women Enjoy Business Networking

The Women's Organisation invited a group of women in business from the Stockport area to network this week. The women who had received help from The Women's Organisation to start their businesses joined together with Enterprise Enablers Mike Marsden and Ali McGrath who welcomed them with tips on making the most of the networking opportunity. The women enjoyed lunch at Oliver's restuarant while sharing experiences and swapping business cards.

Mike Marsden said "We recognise that once these women have started their businesses, the need for support doesn't stop. Networking is so important to keep a business connected and as a tool for marketing. It is a pleasure to be able to offer supported networking time like today's event to give the women we have helped an opportunity to try networking in a safe and supportive environment."

The women who attended were delighted with the event, and feedback comments about the afternoon and the support received included:

"The Women's Organisation have provided me with great support and invaluable advice. Wouldn't have set up my business without this help. Thanks so much Mike."

"Great lunch, great people."

"Brilliant organisation - Garden Angel would be lost without your support!"

"An excellent opportunity to meet others starting out in business - thank you"

"Networking lunch was very helpful. Thank you The Women's Organisation."

"Fantastic lunch, lovely food, lovely company. A great chance to chat and swap stories."

"The Women's Organisation give you all the info you need to set up in business and supplies the encouragement to keep it going!"

"Without The Women's Organisation I would have no idea as to how/where/when to start my own business."

"The Women's Organisation have been a huge help to me in starting my own business. I would thoroughly recommend."

"Without the help from Mike and The Women's Organisation, I wouldn't have known where to begin! Excellent practical help and support all along the way."

If you are a woman in the Stockport area needing support with setting up your own business, give our team a call on 0161 833 8800 or drop an email to to see how The Women's Organisation can help.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Pitching for Management Event

Are you looking to strengthen your management team?
Huge salaries not expected – in fact no cash salary necessary
Pitching for Management in Liverpool – 30th November 2011, DWF, 4pm-7pm – free opportunity to get involved!

Did you know that one of the major reasons why investors reject an investment opportunity is because the management team is not yet complete enough for it to accept investment?

Pitching for Management is a live Dragons’ Den event for hiring top talent to join your firm to help you grow faster.

You have 8 minutes to pitch your business and explain who you want to work with you and why.

The people in the audience are all senior business people looking for a new challenge. They understand the challenges and opportunities of a fast growing business.

This is a launch event in Liverpool – however these events will be running throughout the UK and have launched in 18 cities and received great feedback - entrepreneurs have success in meeting people who can help them grow their businesses. And the good news is that not only is it free to pitch on the night, but the people who want to come and work with you, will be prepared to accept a package which DOES NOT involve paying a big or indeed any cash salary. They will be looking to share the risks and rewards of the business with you by taking bonuses, commissions, sweat equity and/or share options.

Your business does not have to be any particular size or shape to pitch. One of the things the audience most likes about our event is the variety of companies that pitch to them. So if you want or need someone with loads of experience to come and help you grow, please come and pitch.

To reserve your place speak to Caroline Sage on 01761 452 248, email her at or visit:

If you want some background on how to make a great pitch please check out

AngelNews the event organiser is giving a £2,000 cash prize to the winning pitch of the series. If you make the best pitch on the day, you will be invited to the series final in Bristol on 13th December. The winning pitch on that night will win the prize!

To come and see the pitches or for details about the event visit:
For further details about the concept try:

We Mentor - FREE business mentoring for women

We Mentor UK is a European mentoring project run in partnership with NCEE and The Women's Organisation that aims to provide guidance and support for women entrepreneurs to further grow their business enterprise.
The project will link mentors and mentees according to sector, skills, need and preference. Mentors and mentees will be able to work together both in person and through our comprehensive e-mentoring systems to share experiences and build an action plan.

Throughout the course of the project mentees will be given opportunity to:
• Reflect on their own business performance and examine principles of business practice
• Develop strategies for business growth
• Learn from the practices, culture, ethos, communication and procedures of another business
• Enhance their personal development, building in confidence
• Build on personal and professional networks for business opportunity
• Access shared business resources

To register to receive mentoring you should be a woman who:
• Has been running her own business for at least 1 year
• Employs at least 1 member of staff
• Is looking to develop and grow their business in a specific way
• Could benefit from the guidance and experience of a mature business

To register as a mentor you should:
• Have been running your own business for at least 5 years
• Have a commitment to mentoring responsibilities
• Have an awareness of specific issues facing women entrepreneurs
• Be interested in an opportunity for continued professional development

For more information or to register your interest, please contact The Women’s Organisation on 0151 706 8111 or

Maggie O'Carroll is 'Woman of the Year' - Livercool 2011

Downtown Liverpool held their prestigious 'Livercool' awards ceremony celebrating local business success in Crowne Plaza last Thursday night. The Women's Organisation were delighted to see a number of our clients among the nominees including: Emma Dolan of Your Business Ezine - Nominated in the Marketer 2011 category, Kayleigh & Talia Baccino of Trendy Vend- Nominated in the Young Entrepreneur 2011 category and Victoria Brown of High Performance Consultancy who was the eventual winner of Young Entrepreneur 2011.

The biggest cheer of the night came when our very own CEO Maggie O'Carroll was deservedly named 'Woman of the Year'. Maggie founded The Women’s Organisation (formally Train 2000) in 1996 and has grown it into the largest UK-based women’s economic development social enterprise. This has enabled Maggie to pursue her passion for women’s enterprise - having a real, positive impact on women’s lives, whether nurturing new businesses towards a viable future, driving improvements in legislation and power structures or contributing to social awareness. This year the physical realisation of her commitment to women's economic development came to life with the creation of WICED (Women's International Centre for Economic Development). The £5.3m development opened its doors in Liverpool to the first groups of local women in January 2011 and is continuing to build momentum as both a centre for women's enterprise and development, as well as an international research hub to promote gender equality.

A massive congratulations to Maggie and all of the winners and nominees.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Think Growth – Think Global: Focus on USA

Liverpool Chamber of Commerce in partnership with UKTI are hosting a free event at the Liverpool Cathedral to help your company to understand the USA market. Along with talks from US and UKTI specialists we will have local businesses as case studies.

Think Growth – Think Global: Focus on USA

Tuesday, 29th November 2011, 08:00-10:00am

Liverpool Cathedral, St James’ Mount, L1 7AZ
Entrance to main car park is via Upper Duke Street

You will have the opportunity to ask the right people about how to make those all important steps into accessing the US market.


08:00 – Registration and Breakfast
08:30 – Welcome & Opening by LCC
Getting the American Market to notice you. The do’s and don’ts of contemporary marketing in the US
Guest Speaker: Rick McKenna, President, Wallwork Curry McKenna, Boston MA

09:15 – Case Studies –
Steve Smith, Director, Software City
Stephen Wilde, Managing Director, The Translation People

09:40 – British-American Business Council North West –
Steve Smith, Chairman BABC

09:50 – North America Market Advisor, UKTI North West
Richard Northcote

10:00- Q & A

To reserve a place for this event, you can book online at or, alternatively, please contact or call us on 0151 227 1234.

The Women's Organisation Get Internet Savvy with Martha Lane Fox & Michelle Helsby

The Women's Organisation welcomed internet entrepreneur Martha Lane Fox (pictured left) to their 54 St James Street offices today for 'Women's Enterprise Day' as part of Global Entrepreneurship Week. The event called 'Be Internet Savvy' was an opportunity for Martha to share stories of her journey to business success as well as reflecting on her role as the governments digital champion for Race Online 2012.

Speaking first at the event was the extremely inspirational local woman in business Michelle Helsby (pictured right) of Evolve Creative Media & Consultancy. Michelle, originally from Tuebrook, spoke about how her persistance of networking and "always being ready to sell" got her to where she is today. Also signed up as a digital champion, Michelle advised the women “Use the internet to build your knowledge beyond your own business”. In terms of networking and relationship building she said “Use social media, it’s not going away”.

Martha Lane Fox, co-founder of reflected on her business journey saying “In 1997 we were out there convincing people the internet is here to stay, now I am back out there still telling them the internet is important”. Her inspirational advice to the business women attending was “Don’t always listen to the experts, your own instincts are good” and “Business plans are just a piece of the puzzle, people buy people”.

As she started to talk Martha looking around said "You look like a friendly bunch so I'll tell you a story" and started to recollect the awkwardness of one of her early business pitches. She recalled arriving at a meeting with a potential investor, a business man she knew; Having looked over her business plan she said the gentleman looked up at her and said “yes it all looks good, but what happens if you get pregnant?”. Martha laughed to the women at how sexism and narrow mindedness can still be a factor in business, but encouraged them to keep pushing on. Her final words of encouragement were “If you are there, you are valid”.

The business women attending were also given the opportunity to throw questions at the special guests and to network. The event finished with the launch of new Eurpean mentoring project for women entrepreneurs 'We Mentor' which will offer women who have been running their business for over 12 months chance to receive mentoring for business growth from a business mentor who has been in business for at least 5 years. More information about this project run in partnership by The Women's Organisation and NCEE can be found on the prject's facebook fanpage.

Feedback comments for the event included:

“Two very inspirational speakers who gave lots of useful tips and advice”
“Very enjoyable, very inspirational”
“Really well organised”
“Very encouraging. Nice to know I am not the only one who feels overwhelmed. Some good advice for the future”
“Great Speakers”
“Excellent event for women in business wanting to be inspired to grow”
“Really informative. Felt very inspired by the business words of wisdom. Thank you”
“This was an excellent session. Very inspiring”
“Michelle, very inspirational”
“Found speakers very inspirational. Also very good networking event”
“Inspirationl speakers! Great to see local girl done good!”
“Super Event! Really enjoyed the 2 speakers and the mentoring project sounds interesting”

If you are a woman running your own business in the north west of England and you would like to take advantage of events like this, then contact our team on or 0151 706 8111 for details of how to join our business club.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Stockport's Anne Offers Whole Body Care Physiotherapy

When Anne Dansey’s contract with the NHS came to an end she decided to look at it as an opportunity. She wanted to find a way of combining the useful evidence base approach to physiotherapy treatments taught by the NHS along with more specialist treatments she was learning about outside of that framework to set up her own business.

Having never run her own business before, Anne wasn’t sure it would be possible and had no idea where to start. But a friend told her that support was available for women setting up in business through The Women’s Organisation, and so she made contact and soon found she could do it.

Anne said “I attended the courses and was given a business advisor who walked me though all the necessary steps. This included creating a business plan which makes you think about all the potential pitfalls and opportunities of opening a business including legal requirements and finances. They provided incredible support and as long as you are prepared to put in the work they help guide you through every step.”

It wasn’t all plain sailing, and Anne knew that lack of capital to start up was a potential barrier. With support she was able to arrange an interest free loan from the local council of £3,000 which helped her to create her clinic room and pay for furnishings and equipment. She was also put in touch with Evans easy space who had rooms available in Houldsworth mill and Art centre where she found affordable space with full disabled access, free parking, comfortable waiting areas and bathroom facilities.

“The best thing about running my own business is not having any restrictions on the service I provide; Not being restricted to the usual 20 to 30 minute slots of therapy; Not having to limit my clients to around 6 sessions if more are needed; Having the freedom to expand my skills and deliver them to my clients and seeing happy clients discharged from my clinic and knowing it was all the work I put in that helped to achieve that.”

Whole Body Care Physiotherapy provide treatments not often available on the NHS such as Flexotaping or KT taping, a treatment currently utilised by many top sports clubs and athletes but is not readily available to the wider public. Anne also offers treatments such as deep tissue massage, myofascial release and movement, and using a combination of techniques can help to relieve the majority of muscle and joint pains. As Whole Body Care Physiotherapy are committed to these hands on therapies, treatment sessions are often longer than an average physiotherapy session for more intensive treatment.

Anne is positive about the future of her business and said “I am proud of my achievements to date. I am finally open to the public doing a job I love. I have taken an empty space and created a warm and comfortable clinic room. I have had lots of good results with clients most of whom have been to several other clinicians before me with little or no effect.”

For more information on the treatments available from Whole Body Care Physiotherapy contact Anne on 0161-975-6270 or email The clinic is based at Houldsworth Mill, Houldsworth Street, Reddish, Stockport, SK5-6DA

And if like Anne you would like to explore setting up your own business then contact The Women’s Organisation on 0161 833 8800/ 0151 706 8111 or via email to

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Government Equalities Office Publish 'Strengthening Women's Voices in Government' Report

The Women's Organisation were interested to hear the announcement by Government Equalities Office that they were publishing the findings from the 'Strengthening Women's Voices in Government' public consultation. The Government consulted on a new model of engagement to bring women’s voices into Government. The consultation ran from 7 March until 15 June 2011 and set out the principles for the new approach, which are:

• Women across the UK can be heard and are enabled to influence and shape Government policy;
• The new approach must be genuinely cross-Government and departments are committed to listening to women, taking their views into account, and feeding back the results, and
• Women know what central Government is doing across the breadth of policies and are able to act on that knowledge.

The new approach should transform the way in which women’s voices are brought to Government, delivering an engagement framework which is direct, inclusive and transparent.

The top priorities women identified were:

• Issues relating to the workplace and women’s experience of work including promotion; better work life balance; childcare and setting up a business.
• Tackling violence against women and girls;
• A strong appetite for greater equality for women;
• Access to leadership positions, both in politics and business;
• More engagement with women, including with senior women in business/women entrepreneurs.

In her speech on 4th November on Women and the Economy, the Rt Hon Theresa May MP, Home Secretary and Minister for Women and Equalities informed guests that the Government is publishing its response to the consultation.
To read the government’s response to the consultation please visit:

Further to the report, a new scheme was revealed by Theresa May to support female entrepreneurs through mentoring. The £2m initiative will see 5,000 business women trained to become volunteer mentors, with the aim of providing female entrepreneurs with positive role models.

If you are interested in receiving business mentoring or offering mentoring to other businesses, follow our 'We Mentor' project on Twitter.

Setting Up a Social Enterprise 1 Day Course With KPAC

Date & Time: Mon, 28/11/2011 - 09:30 - 16:00
Venue: KPAC, The Old Schoolhouse, St.John’s Road, Huyton, L36 0UX

This course is aimed at people who are interested in learning more about social enterprises and want to know what the advantages are of being a social enterprise business and how to go about the initial steps of considering and setting up a social enterprise.

Course content includes:

What is a Social Enterprise?
The difference between social enterprises and other businesses
Different types of social enterprise
Considerations when setting up a social enterprise
Management structures in social enterprise
The triple bottom line
Advantages and Disadvantages of being a social enterprise
Stakeholder analysis
First steps in setting up a social enterprise

Cost: £49.00 – Lunch and refreshments included

For further information on this course, or if you would like to book a please contact KPAC

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

'Step Up' Personal Development for Sefton Women

Sefton women looking to build confidence and build steps to a positive future are invited to join The Women's Organisation ‘Step Up’ programme.

This interactive programme is open FREE to women in the Sefton area who want to improve their overall confidence to be able to plan a successful future. Over 3 Mondays ‘Step Up’ will look at:

• Positive Thinking and Learning about Yourself
• How to Become a More Assertive You
• Building Your Communication Skills
• Completing a Skills Audit and Developing a Personal Profile
• How to Present Yourself with Confidence

To be eligible for a FREE place on this programme you must:
• Be aged 19+ and have been resident in the UK or any other EU state for over 3 years
• Live in one of the following wards within Sefton and be able to provide proof of address:
o Church, Linacre, Derby, Ford, Litherland, Netherton, Orrell, St Oswald, Duke, Cambridge

At: Seaforth Children’s Centre, Caradoc Road, Seaforth, L21
On: Mondays 21st, 28th Nov & 5th Dec 9.30am-3pm

To book your FREE place call 0151 706 8111 or email

Funding Opportunity for Prince's Park Ward Community Groups

Austin Smith Memorial Small Grants Fund

The Liverpool 8 Law Centre has created the Austin Smith Memorial Fund in recognition of Father Smith’s significant community work in the Toxteth area.

Father Smith (1928 – 2011) was a tireless campaigner for social justice and sought to improve the everyday lives of people in his community. The memorial fund will distribute funds to community groups that in different ways are continuing his work.
You will be able to apply for a grant up to £1,000 per group.

Who can apply
• Small not for profit community groups in the Princes Park ward
• Organisations who have not received funding from this source this year
What you will need to apply
• A constitution
• A bank account in the name of the organisation with two unrelated cheque signatories

What the grants are used for?
• Help start, new small projects and activities
• Contribute towards the running of an event, festival or other special occasion which will promote community involvement or co-operation
• Groups who deliver intergenerational activities especially those which may reduce isolation
• Projects that will develop stronger communities-people working together to tackle issues in their neighbourhood
• Projects that have long lasting benefits

Small grants will not be awarded for the following purposes:
• Applications from individuals
• Social / health care
• Staff salaries or management costs
• Purchase of vehicles/IT equipment
• General appeals/fundraising/overseas travel
• Schools/registered social landlords
• Purchase or consumption of alcohol

How to apply
You can download an application pack online at:

If you require a hard copy or for further details, contact the Community Resource Unit (CRU) on 233 4436 or email

Closing date: Friday 9 December 2011 at 12noon
Note: Successful former applicants to the Austin Smith Fund this year 2011-2012 cannot apply.

Source: LCVS

Monday, November 7, 2011

The Women's Organisation Support 'Counting Women In' Campaign

The Women's Organisation have signed up to back 'Counting Women In' campaign. The movement headed up by Fawcett Society and partners asks for support to fight for women to have an equal presence and voice in British politics. 50/50 male/female representation is the goal of the campaign.

Why is the campaign important?
There are currently more millionaires than women in the Cabinet. Just 22% – or 1 in 5 - members of the Westminster Parliament are women and the number of women MPs has increased by only 4 per cent since 1997. This means a child born today will be drawing her pension before she has an equal voice in the government of her country.

Decisions of national importance – about everything from whether to go to war to what to teach in our schools – are being made without women round the table: the different experiences and perspectives of one half of the country are not being heard.

How can you get involved?
An online petition to support the push for gender equality at a parlimentary level has been set up. You can go and sign the petition online to show your support. If you work for an organisation who would like to back the campaign you too can sign up to back the movement.

Go to for details and to join in.

'Build a Business on a Budget' with The Women's Organisation Enterprise Fair

Celebrating Global Entrepreneurship Week –
Come and join our Enterprise Fair

Drop in On: Thursday 17th November 1pm-4pm
At: The Women’s Organisation, 54 St James Street, L1 0AB

‘Build a Business on a Budget’ Marketplace will feature stalls helping you to:

• Find out about small low cost franchises
• Understand how tax credits work when self employed
• Look at how you could turn a hobby or skill into a business you could set up from home
• Find out about training opportunities that can help you to reach your goals
• Find out about funding and free support available to women going self-employed

Join in our short:
‘Is self-employment for you’ taster workshops
Running at 1.30pm, 2.30pm, or 3.30pm

For more info call 0151 706 8111 or email