Free online entrepreneurship course for people with disabilities

Previous research from TU Dublin, which runs the course, has indicated that Ireland has one of the lowest employment rates in the EU for people with disabilities.

TU Dublin is set to run a new entrepreneurship course for people with disabilities. The free course will take place entirely online and is designed to overcome the additional barriers people with disabilities face when starting or running their own business.

Participants will leave the course with the skills and knowledge to become self-employed. Each participant will also receive a business mentor through the Local Enterprise Office network. People who are already running their own business are not eligible as the program is focused on pre-startups.

TU Dublin runs the program in response to Previous search he did so in 2020. Professor Thomas Cooney and his Canadian co-author found that Ireland has one of the lowest employment rates in the EU for people with disabilities. The last census listed the figure as 26.2pc, which is more than double the rate of 12.9pc for the population as a whole. The EU average is 52 piecesaccording to Inclusion Europe.

The report highlighted the role that entrepreneurship could play in overcoming the many barriers people with disabilities face in accessing employment. However, at the last census, only 52,115 people with disabilities owned their own business.

Cooney, who designed and will lead the program, said “self-employment helps people with disabilities to participate socially and economically.”

“It also allows them to choose their own hours or work remotely, which gives them more flexibility than what can be found in paid employment. However, despite the benefits, there is limited awareness of self-employment as a career option for people with disabilities within their own community and within corporate agencies and disability advocacy organizations.

The course will be launched at an event hosted today (June 13) by the Open House Initiative. The Irish nonprofit is hosting a webinar on entrepreneurship for people with disabilities at the launch. He is co-founder and supporter of the program. Other organizations involved as supporters and partners are AIB, the Local Enterprise Office, Disability Federation of Ireland, DoTheFinancials.com, Microfinance Ireland and SimVenture.

Applications are currently open for the program. It’s free and starts September 21. It will last 12 weeks. More information on how to apply can be found on TU Dublin website.

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