Self Employment

SECAD helps people who are setting up their business in two ways

Training and Mentoring for Self Enterprise

Funding for micro enterprise


Training and Mentoring for Self Enterprise

From time to time SECAD runs Start Your Own Business courses around South and East Cork.  Known as the AIR (“Am I Ready, Am I Right?”)  programme this covers all aspects of setting up your own business, including assessing your business idea, business planning, legal, financial, marketing, sales and other aspects of running a small business. The course is usually run over 5 weeks, two x 3 hour sessions per week, daytime. It is aimed at people who are signing on the live register.

In addition to the five week course the programme includes 10 hours of one to one mentoring with each participant on the course.  SECAD has a panel of mentors from which to draw on and their expertise include marketing, sales, legal, social media and web analysis, taxation, VAT and other financial aspects of running a business.

For current upcoming SECAD courses please go to “Training


Funding for micro enterprise

You can to apply to SECAD under the Rural Development Programme for funding for your business.

The Rural Development Programme 2007-2013 is a follow on from the LEADER+ programme, which is administered by the Department of Community Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs. The specific aim of the Rural Development Programme is to encourage and help rural actors to think about the longer‑term potential of their area. It seeks to encourage the implementation of integrated, high-quality, original strategies for sustainable development designed to encourage experimenting withnew ways of:


  • Diversification into Non-Agricultural Activities
  • Business creation and development
  • Encouragement of Tourism Activities
  • Basic services for the Economy and Rural Population
  • Village Renewal and Development
  • Conservation and Upgrading of the Rural Heritage

Please note that the RDP funding covers all of SECAD’s areas including urban areas such as Ballincollig, Midleton, Youghal, Cobh, Glanmire, Douglas, Carrigaline.

For Further Information on the RDP programme please contact:

Edel Smiddy, Development Officer 021-4613432 or email

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