Speakers at the free East Kent College event for women interested in starting their own business are, from left, Amanda Holges, Angela Brier-Stephenson and Brenda Cameron.
Opportunity beckons women who are unemployed and those who want to start their own business at a special free event at East Kent College.
On Wednesday, October 23, the Broadstairs college hosts Women Mean Business LIVE, from 10am to 1pm.
The session is a mix of talks, workshops, one-to-ones and networking with an informal, friendly atmosphere for women who would like to start, or who already run, a business or third-sector organisation.
The event represents a chance for women in Thanet, a deprived area with high unemployment and low skills. Margate has one of the highest rates of 15-17-year old pregnancoes, low aspiration, high levels of deprivation, child poverty, and educational failure according to the Turning the Tide report.
More women on theIsle are seeking Job Seekers Allowance (3.7%) compared to the average in the south east (2.3%).
In Thanet, 20.8% of women are claiming ‘key out of work’ , ‘carers’, or ‘lone parent’ benefits.
In work, on average, females are earning around £116.50 per week less than the local male working age population.
This is against the back drop of average earnings in Thanet being £140.70 per week less than the south east average.
Organiser Christine Holmes said: “According to Labour party figures, unemployment among women aged 50-64 has gone up by a shocking 41% in the last two and a half years – compared with one per cent overall.
“Thanet women are finding it tougher to get jobs than men and, if they do, they earn a lot less. Starting their own business may be the only way into work for some and the programme we would like to offer will boost confidence and self-esteem.
“We aim to inspire and inform and women can pick up tips to use in their own businesses, make new contacts and share information and ask for advice and feedback and, hopefully, have fun.
“We have invited some fabulous, entertaining and informative women, who all run businesses in Kent, to share their expertise and experiences with us.”
Speaking will be Amanda Holges of Kent Business Angels, who will share her experiences of starting a business.
Hilary Steel, editor of Kent Women in Business Magazine, will present a fun interactive session to discover personality types and Karen Wisdom, who specialises in advising people how to use social media in business, will focus on Linkedin and Twitter.
Clinical hypnotherapist Brenda Cameron’s workshop will share a simple technique to lift spirits. Jim Bristow, of the Manufacturing Advisory Service, will talk about grants available to small and medium enterprises.
The meeting is free, with an optional networking buffet lunch for £5.