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Preston City Council urge city businesses to join free webinars on ownership and inclusivity

Posted on - 13th September, 2021 - 9:52am | Author - | Posted in - Business, Politics, Preston Council, Preston News
Preston City Council town hall. Pic: Tony Worrall
Preston City Council town hall. Pic: Tony Worrall

Prospective business owners and entrepreneurs are being offered the chance to learn more about different models of business ownership at a free webinar in September.

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Community businesses are taking off in the wake of the pandemic as individuals and community groups explore new and fairer ways to rebuild their communities which are sustainable and share wealth and opportunities more widely.

To support this and the development of a vibrant and more diverse local economy, Preston City Council is promoting two opportunities in September to learn about community and cooperative businesses.

Read more: Unemployed over 50’s across Preston invited to four-week programme to help with mental health and job prospects

Sponsored training places on Stir to Action’s New Economy Programme will make it possible for 20 people who have an idea for a new business, including a community business, to join a free webinar to learn how they might develop their project as a cooperative business.

Councillor Matthew Brown, Leader of Preston City Council, said: “As we rebuild from the effects of the pandemic it is important we encourage people from all backgrounds to get involved in developing new business opportunities.

“Establishing new cooperative enterprises is at the heart of how we can build an inclusive local economy following the pandemic.  

“Often people with good entrepreneurial ideas don’t have access to the support or information they need to turn an idea into something more.

“We hope that through this programme many people from across our communities will be inspired to explore new and fairer ways of doing business that will hopefully flourish into exciting local enterprises.”

Annie Wynn of Let’s Grow Preston, an environmental charity working in Preston which helps local communities brighten up their areas and greenspaces, has already signed up to one of the webinars.

She said: “Being able to develop some of our work into worker owned cooperatives would help us involve our volunteers and local residents more holistically in our activities and create an income for them and the charity.

“Community ownership and raising money to buy community buildings through community shares is another opportunity that we would like to learn more about, so we are delighted that these webinars make it possible to do so.”

Read more: Preston one of top UK cities for graduates according to new research

For translators and interpreters based in and around Preston, a special online event on Wednesday 15 September will introduce Indira Guzman from the Community Language Cooperative in Colorado, USA to talk about her experiences.

Aysha Patel of Preston’s Kind Communities, which has supported South Asian Heritage students at UCLan during the pandemic, is especially excited about the possibility of Preston establishing its own community language cooperative.

She said: “Community participation is an integral part of civic life, and the global pandemic has shown the importance of including all our diverse communities in decision making.

“Kind Communities is keen to explore how an interpreters’ cooperative can make society accessible to all – regardless of background or language and help remove barriers to participation by non-English speakers.”

To sign up, click here.

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