Support to kick-start businesses in Wide Bay - Burnett region

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Aspiring entrepreneurs and small business people in the Wide Bay- Burnett region can now receive practical assistance and support through a new local Entrepreneurship Facilitator.

Federal Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt congratulated Bundaberg Business Enterprise Centre which was successful in its application to offer the program to the region which covers the Wide Bay-Burnett area including Bundaberg, Hervey Bay and Gympie.

"The new facilitator will encourage entrepreneurship and self-employment, with a focus on providing support to mature-age people, but anyone wanting to start their own business can access the services," Mr Pitt said.

"We know that if you lose your job over the age of 50, it is harder and takes longer to get back into the labour market.

"Older Australians have a lifetime of skills and are often well placed to become successful entrepreneurs. The Entrepreneurship Facilitator will provide practical support, including tailored mentoring and referring people to services to help them start and run their own business.

"Helping people understand what's required to start or grow a small business, develop a marketing strategy, understand cash flow and develop a budget are just some of the services that facilitators can offer," Mr Pitt said.

Federal Member for Wide Bay Llew O'Brien said Entrepreneurship Facilitators will be available across the Wide Bay region to connect people with services to help them start their own business.

"With a facilitator based in Gympie servicing Gympie, South Burnett and Cherbourg Council areas, and another in Bundaberg looking after the Bundaberg and Fraser Coast Council areas, help is at hand to guide people through the process of getting their business of the ground."

Bundaberg Business Enterprise Centre manager Marcus McCormick said the team was excited to be delivering Entrepreneurship Facilitator Services across the Wide Bay Burnett region.

"This program provides a great opportunity to drive new business growth and will support those who are interested in establishing a business, to take the required steps to give them the best chance of success," Mr McCormick said.

"We have brought a team of Entrepreneurship Facilitators together who each have skills and experience in establishing and running their own businesses. They will provide friendly and personalised service and will be available to meet with and provide one on one support to entrepreneurs and establishing business owners. Our Facilitators will also co-ordinate a number of informative business workshops across the region."

"We are currently in the process of establishing the services and will have offices open in Bundaberg and Gympie 5 days per week. We will also be working from multiple locations across the region and will be available to meet with clients in locations across the North and South Burnett, Fraser Coast and Cherbourg areas".

"We congratulate the Australian Government on making this important service available within our region and we look forward to working with the region's entrepreneurs and business owners over the coming years".

For more information on Entrepreneurship Facilitator Services please contact the Bundaberg Business Enterprise Centre on (07) 4153 2333 or email the Facilitators on:
Rebecca Corbett – Bundaberg Office - rcorbett@bundabergbec.org.au
Lynne Wilbraham – Gympie Office – lwilbraham@bundabergbec.org.au
Jason Virtue – Gympie office – jvirtue@bundabergbec.org.au

Entrepreneurship Facilitators are part of a suite of measures announced in the 2018-19 Budget as part of the Coalition Government's $189.7 million More Choices for a Longer Life package to support older Australians.

The program builds on the success of existing facilitators in three regions, who have been supporting young people to pursue entrepreneurships since December 2016. This program has so far reached more than 23,000 Australians at workshops, jobs fairs, schools and other local forums. More than 1,000 people have received individualised support and advice to turn their ideas into viable businesses.

For more information about the Entrepreneurship Facilitators visit: www.jobs.gov.au/entrepreneurship-facilitators.

 
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