Cultural awareness firm will make impact on community
At the launch of the programme were Shane Hughes (11), Student of Red Rhino Kickboxing (Ideas Academy 2022 participant) with Maurice McQuillan, CEO, Lifes2good Foundation, Tim Griffiths, CEO, Social Entrepreneurs Ireland, Tatiana Santos, TalkActive (Ideas Academy 2022 participant), Paige Byrne (13) – Student of Red Rhino Kickboxing , Sarah Fliessbach, foreuse (Ideas Academy 2022 participant) and Catherine May, General Counsel, Bank of America. Photo by Julien Behal

Cultural awareness firm will make impact on community

A BALLYCULLEN woman who runs a cultural awareness company has graduated from a three-month programme led by Social Entrepreneurs Ireland’s (SEI) Ideas Academy.

Nessrine Zouai, who lives in Ballycullen, was selected for the programme as she’s an early-stage social entrepreneur and founder of Cultural Competencies Ireland.

Cultural Competencies Ireland develops and delivers a cultural awareness training programme for social-care workers.

The company’s training aims to equip social-care workers with the skills necessary to ensure the cultural and religious needs of migrant children who don’t speak English are being met.

The training also highlights the importance of social care workers being aware of cultural practices and communication methods, and how these differ from their own.

Ms Zouai’s plans for Cultural Competencies Ireland have received a boost after graduating from SEI’s Ideas Academy last month, as one of 45 early-stage social entrepreneurs who graduated.

The SEI Ideas Academy is a three-month programme providing social entrepreneurs with the support and direction they need to help them kick-start their idea and take the initial steps to tackle the problem at hand.

Over three months last summer, participants received tailored training on topics such as organisational structures, governance, storytelling and piloting.

The programme also provided opportunities for peer learning and networking, and the graduating social entrepreneurs can now pitch for seed funding from a total pot of €40,000 to pilot their idea.

They will pitch to a panel of judges composed of sector experts, leading entrepreneurs and SEI staff for up to €5,000.

Lydia Redmond, programme manager at the SEI’s Ideas Academy, said: “The Ideas Academy is special in that the participants are at the crucial first stage of their social entrepreneurship.

“Over the past three months, these budding social entrepreneurs have received the direction they need to take their first steps from idea to action.

“I t has been an absolute pleasure working with them, we can’t wait to see the positive impact they will go on to make in their communities.”

Social Entrepreneurs Ireland will launch its next call for applications in Spring 2023.

For more information, visit socialentrepreneurs.

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