Workshop Helps Young Women With Disabilities Launch Their Own Businesses

Young women with disabilities were this weekend given the opportunity to turn their passion into their profession thanks to a series of free entrepreneurial workshops hosted online by the Accelerator for Enterprising Women and The Good Incubator.

Throughout seven masterclass sessions, young women aged 18 to 24 from around the country will learn how to build their own brand, nail an elevator pitch and develop a business plan.

Several of the young women now plan on submitting their ideas into the Enterprising women Kickstarter Challenge to go in the running to win a share in $60,000 worth of funding to launch their business.

Fel Andronicou from Melbourne’s Bayside area is among the ten women who attended the workshop.

Diagnosed with autism last year in the middle of lockdown, the 20 year old was struck by the limited services available in her area.

“I received a late autism diagnosis in the middle of lockdown, and when I looked into support services, all that I could find were programs being run on the other side of the city and that I couldn’t access because of COVID-19 restrictions,” said Fel Andronicou.

Out of her frustrations, a business idea to build a peer support network in her area was created, and it’s one she wants to develop further in the Accelerator for Enterprising Women workshop.

“My aim is to use the skills I learnt in the workshops to create a business that helps those with autism feel connected, build confidence and reduce social isolation,” she said.

Li Tan from the Brisbane suburb of Fairfield also attended the workshops and learnt some important business skills required to launch a platform designed to help people with a disability “adult”.

“Last year I really struggled to access mental health support and get officially diagnosed with anxiety. My business idea would help other people in the same situation as me,” said Li Tan.

“I want my platform to be a one-stop shop for people with a disability, offering advice on everything from finding a GP or a rental property, to budgeting and eating well at home,” added the 20 year-old.

The Good Incubator’s Tricia Malowney OAM was the host of the masterclasses and hopes the online workshops will help create businesses that meet the needs of those with disability.

“Whilst there are a lot of programs that help people with disability work for businesses, this program will help disabled people create and run their own,” said Tricia Malowney.

“Young people with a disability come easily to entrepreneurship because they can adapt, they’re flexible and above all resilient,” she said.

Australians with disability are more likely than the rest of the population to be self-employed or entrepreneurs. According to research carried out by the University of Technology Sydney last year, about 13.1 per cent of people with disability are self-employed or entrepreneurs compared with only 9.2 per cent of non-disabled Australians.

This year the entrepreneurial program The Accelerator for Enterprising Women has delivered eleven Incubator Workshops and seven summit events held at universities across the country.

“We are really proud to be delivering this program and helping more young women, including those with disabilities, turn their passion into their profession and potentially win their share in $60,000 worth of funding to launch their business,” said The Accelerator for Enterprising Women spokesperson Jessica Tancred.

If you’re interested in the Kickstarter Challenge and you identify as a women with a disability, we are encouraging you to register and attend the following workshops.

Workshops will take place online between 1:00pm and 4:00pm on 2nd, 3rd, 9th, 10th and 16th of October, with places still available.

To register your interest to attend click here: