EMS’s Eureka Programme Going From Strength to Strength

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Enterprise Made Simple (EMS) are making some very positive strides in County Durham to support individuals who are unemployed with their unique self-employment course, called Eureka. The 5-day fully-funded course, which runs monthly across County Durham, helps participants to explore a business idea they have, or to create that spark of wanting to pursue self-employment.

Inspired by the rising popularity of becoming self-employed, the Eureka course covers a wide range of enterprising skills, from managing your money effectively, exploring the viability of a business idea, market research and identifying your key skills and qualities. A unique element of the course is its interactive style, led by EMS’s own business trainers, which encourages learner participation throughout all the activities. Business trainer, Lauren Durance, has seen how effective this approach has been.

“We like to get our learners exploring the viability of a business idea and take the time with them to research the marketplace. Often, the learners on Eureka are at the beginning stages of their journey into self-employment, so for me, it’s about providing meaningful and engaging content which challenges them to think entrepreneurially.”

This would not have been possible though without the excellent support from our partners at EMS. Job centres across County Durham had faith in the programme immediately, with work coach team leader at Durham job centre, David Pugh saying:

“We were approached by EMS to discuss how we could work together to support customers looking to move into self-employment. From initial discussions, EMS attended the office comms and have built up excellent relationships with staff on site and we have been able to offer even more support to customers looking at self-employment as an option.”

“We are excited to continue working with EMS as feedback has been very positive. Customers have especially mentioned that the continued support once registered with HMRC has been invaluable.”

EMS has also built a fantastic working relationship with the Individual Placement and Support (IPS) team, who are part of the NHS Foundation Trust. They offer employment support to individuals who have sought help from a Community Mental Health team by offering employer engagement support. The Eureka course was of particular interest to the IPS team as they work with several individuals who consider self-employment as a viable route to take.

“The clients who have attended have fed back how helpful the course has been and their increase in confidence is evident – so much so that follow-up appointments have been booked in place for continued support with EMS.”

“About 6-7 people have been referred to EMS – it’s a quick and easy referral process, forwarding name and contact number through to Callum (Enterprise Coach at EMS) with client permission. The clients and the other IPS advisers in my team appreciate the understanding of the health issues some of our clients have and we look forward to further engagement with Callum and EMS.”

EMS would like to thank all our course attendees so far and our partners above. We are keen to build further great working partnerships across County Durham and inspire those seeking to explore the world of entrepreneurship.

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