Enterprise Facilitation aims to promote local economic growth in Western and South Western Sydney by providing support to local entrepreneurs with refugee and refugee-like backgrounds wishing to start or expand a small business enterprise.
It is a model of development that supports the creation of wealth from within a community by nurturing the resourcefulness of its people. Refugees and other migrants have many skills and talents that can contribute to the Australian economy and community. They are keen to work and are passionate about their business ideas, but often lack knowledge of Australian business and financial systems.
How it works
Enterprise Facilitation uses the ‘Sirolli methodology’, to help would-be entrepreneurs transform their ideas into viable enterprises. The Sirolli Institute is an international not-for-profit institution that works with communities to establish sustainable, grassroots enterprise projects.
Using this method, Enterprise Facilitators provide a free, confidential and accessible service to would-be entrepreneurs backed by a network of experienced professionals, business and support people some of whom make up the official Resource Board. The Enterprise Facilitator connects refugees with sound business ideas with this network, who provide the support and advice they need to create a successful business.
Enterprise Facilitation differs from other forms of business mentoring in two significant ways. Firstly, it offers a simple but effective management coaching approach that encourages entrepreneurs to form competent management teams before they prematurely invest their life savings or seek finance. The rationale for the approach is that it is rare to find a single entrepreneur who is equally skilled in the three major areas of business – product, marketing, and finance.
Secondly, Enterprise Facilitation brings together the best and brightest leaders in the community to pool their knowledge and networks to enable the entrepreneur to find the right people to build the team that puts together the business plan.
This method has been successfully introduced into many communities across the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Australia.
Case Study: Amazing Family Day Care
Amazing Family Day Care opened its doors in 2011 as Sydney’s first multicultural family day care service catering mainly to Sydney’s multicultural population. Founded by Deeqo Omar, Amazing FDC was originally started as a way to help women of refugee background find meaningful work in the community. It has expanded rapidly and now employs about 150 family day carers, almost all of whom are refugee women.
Most of these women have had limited access to education and had significant difficulties finding employment. Now, all have regular work, and some have even been able to put a deposit on their own house with the money they have made!
The story of how the Enterprise Facilitator worked with, mentored and supported Deeqo demonstrates the effectiveness of the method and its potential impact on the wider community.
Read more: Deeqo Omar – An Amazing Life
This STARTTS project has no ended.