The amount of support available to small businesses varies from year to year and from government to government. Regional growth funds and council funding can add to this and provide a wide range of support services to small businesses.
They are available to everyone - male or female, of any ethnic group and any religion.
The issue is NOT that the support isn't there. The issue is that they don't know about it.
Statistics show that more businesses are being set up by women than ever before and that women are setting up more businesses in the UK than men at the moment. Whether they are aware of the support is a completely different matter.
Let me give you an example. Wandsworth Council is currently running a business support programme with Branduin and the local Chamber of Commerce. It is available to anyone in the borough who is looking to start a new business, has just started or has been running their business for some time. The audience this has attracted is about 75% women.
So let's spend our energy on ensuring people are aware of the support available, rather than pushing for specific support for specific groups.
Just a thought...
The FSB has launched a new campaign aimed at increasing the number of women in business. Speaking in Cardiff, Helen Walbey, chair of the FSB’s UK-wide diversity panel said: “If women were to set up businesses and grow them at the same rate as men, we would see a huge boost to growth and prosperity in this country. In fact, the UK Government estimates it could add £600bn to the economy.” The campaign has at its centre a call for more UK and Welsh Government support and better access to finance. It said that by supporting more women entrepreneurs both Wales and the UK as a whole would benefit from more economic activity.