BANBRIDGE woman Caroline Greer now has a successful beauty salon, Flawless Beauty, in the town - thanks to the help of the Prince’s Trust.
The 21-year-old qualified beautician who specialises as a nail technician worked in Belfast to gain further experience, but was unable to find full-time employment locally. Caroline decided that the only way to turn her situation around was to work for herself. She had no capital and no idea how to start up a business but after hearing about The Prince’s Trust, Caroline approached the youth charity for advice.
With the aid of a small grant, advice and a very helpful business mentor, The Prince’s Trust was able to help Caroline set up her own company. Caroline is determined to help other young people in the area and she has provided work experience and placement opportunities for trainee beauticians.
She said she is delighted to be a role model for others and is a very active member of the local business community.
Over the past three years with the support of the European Social Fund and Department of Education and Learning, The Prince’s Trust has supported almost 1,000 disadvantaged young people in Northern Ireland to explore the possibility of setting up their own businesses. More than 400 people have subsequently gone on to self employment after completing the Entrepreneurship Programme which promotes self employment as an option to unemployment for marginalised youth.
More than 95 young people in County Down have received the help they needed to develop their ideas into real businesses. With unemployment for young people at an all-time high in Northern Ireland, many of these new enterprises have helped boost the local economy and provide employment at a time when it is increasingly difficult for young people to start out in the world of business.
The Prince’s Trust works with 14-to-30 year-olds who have struggled at school, have been in care, are long-term unemployed or have been in trouble with the law. In Northern Ireland, over 3,000 young people each year are supported through practical help including training, mentoring and financial assistance.