Forty women look to bright future in self-employment

By Aideen O'Flaherty 

A GROUP of 40 women, who are primarily from Tallaght, graduated from a pioneering new course on Friday, aimed at encouraging women to become self-employed business owners.

The women are the first graduates of Partas’s WEBNET (Women Excelling in Business Network) course, which required the women to attend classes in Bolbrook Enterprise Centre for one day a week for 30 weeks.

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Pictured at the participants of WEBNET with then Mayor Paul Gogarty receiving their awards

The graduates learned about a variety of different topics in order to bolster their business acumen, including completing QQI modules in sales and marketing skills, business planning and career planning.

Diane Richmond, who is the assistant CEO of Partas Bolbrook Enterprise Centre, told The Echo: “All of the women who were in the course are on the way to becoming self-employed. One of the women has already opened a food business in Killinarden Enterprise Centre.

“Some of the women haven’t [been in education] since they were in school, but they all helped each other through the programme and their confidence had improved dramatically by the end of it.”

The women became adept at giving presentations and pitching their businesses through the course of the programme, and they built up a strong bond with one another.

Ms Richmond added: “It’s a long-term commitment – they committed to 30 weeks and they learned their strengths and what they needed to improve on.

“Often women lack skills around selling, marketing and networking, so the course focused on those skills.”

The course was funded by the Department of Justice and Equality, through the Gender Equality European Social Fund (ESF) PEIL programme.

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