Institute of Technology Carlow launches entrepreneurship initiative for recognised refugees
Institute of Technology Carlow has launched an initiative to support recognised refugees in establishing their own businesses in Ireland.
Enter to Transform is a €2.14M part-funded Interreg North-West Europe project to help increase the entrepreneurial capacity of recognised refugees. The programme provides valuable training in entrepreneurship for recognised refugee restarters and the opportunity to become ready for business creation through a three-phase, six-month programme. The project, which will be implemented in Ireland by Institute of Technology Carlow and Letterkenny Institute of Technology, is also being rolled out in the Netherlands, Germany and France.
Commenting on the initiative Brian Ogilvie, Research and Commercialisation Support Manager, Institute of Technology Carlow said, “Recognised refugee restarters with business experience from their own country have huge potential for business creation and expansion but need specific mentoring to adopt to a new country. The Enter to Transform project addresses the needs of recognised refugee restarters for social inclusion through self-employment and facilitates their pathway to contribute to the regional economy. The project develops a supportive environment of hubs, which function through mentoring networks as a ‘door-opener’ for recognised refugee re-starters to enter existing entrepreneurial infrastructures”.
The programme has three phases and will be delivered through English and Arabic. Through raising online awareness and practical workshops, recognised refugees will be taken through the process of starting a business, from ideation to enterprise scaling. Essential knowledge about the Irish entrepreneurial and legal ecosystem also will be provided, along with an on-campus co-working space and mentoring from experienced entrepreneurs.
By regional hub creation and mentoring, it is anticipated that the project will contribute to more inclusiveness in European business creation. Regional hubs are at the core of the project and will be a meeting place for stakeholders, restarters and other support groups for exchanging ideas, advancing knowledge and co-working. In so doing, each partner region fosters social innovation based on a transnational framework of hubs.
The programme takes place over a six month period: Phase 1 stand-up workshop will take place on 19th October 2021 from 2-5pm; Phase 2 start-up phase workshops will take place on 2nd and 9th November from 2-5pm; Phase 3 scale-up phase workshops will take place on 16th, 23rd and 30th November from 12-5pm. One-to-one mentoring will run from December 2021 – April 2022.