Work Programme leads the way in self-employment
The Work Programme Somerset team helped a customer run a networking and launch event for 12 new businesses, all started by Work Programme customers who were long term unemployed, at the Swan Hotel in Wells last Monday (2 March).
The event was attended by Tessa Munt MP, who had rescheduled her diary and stayed for more than an hour, speaking to every business owner. The Wells Chamber of Commerce, Work Programme, high street banks and BBC Radio also attended.
The event was the idea of Maree Kivlichan, a Work Programme customer who has just started her own company providing support to local businesses. Maree contacted the Work Programme for advice and support on how to run the event, and colleagues were happy to help, including persuading partner organisations and businesses to attend. The Swan Hotel hosted and sponsored the event.
The Work Programme customers all completed a six week course on self-employment, delivered by Simon Fletcher from MAD Skills. Maree said: “With Prospects’ direction, and Simon’s enthusiasm and encouragement, we have all been able to take steps towards self-employment and launch our own businesses. We have done this with no financial backing or bank loans, but as a result of our own investment, combined with good business models and hard work.”
She added: “Prospects was amazing; helping with funding for the event, assisting with co-ordinating attendees from different areas, and arranging transport for those further away to enable them to come. The presence of two of the management team along with the advisers from two offices provided much encouragement to all involved.”