Over a year after the conflict in their country began, some 80 displaced Ukrainians determined to get back on their feet in Ireland have completed a Start Your Own Business programme thanks to a collaborative effort between the Fingal Ukrainian Response Forum and the Irish Red Cross. The initiative encompasses a programme tailored to the requirements of Ukrainian nationals living across the country and is delivered as a hybrid course, both online and in-person. It covers a variety of modules including finance, business management, networking and legal requirements. Recognising an opportunity to do more at a local level, the Irish Red Cross approached Fingal County Council to do develop a course for Ukrainians who were interested in start their own business in Ireland. That led to the Fingal Local Enterprise Office (LEO) rolling out a customised Start Your Own Business programme that could be delivered bilingually. With strong links to the Ukrainian community through their hubs across Ireland, the Irish Red Cross were well positioned to identify interested candidates and set about the registration process that saw them recruit some 80 participants with varying backgrounds and business ideas. Congratulating the first tranche of those taking part in the programme, Fingal Ukrainian Response Forum Chairman and Mayor of Fingal, Cllr Howard Mahony said: “This is a fantastic initiative that gives budding entrepreneurs from Ukraine the right tools and business insights to enable them to be positive contributors to the economic growth of the country. “Those taking part see an opportunity to not only generate employment for themselves, but support the creation of small businesses. They are bringing their own ideas, expertise and varied backgrounds to really make a go of being here after fleeing the horrors back in their own country. I am delighted that Fingal continues to be a warm and welcoming hub for those coming to Ireland and hope that this type of business incubator concept can be replicated with success elsewhere.” Many of those taking part have signed up for the programme having had businesses in Ukraine and are looking to start their business in Ireland.