Budding entrepreneurs in Dartford can access expert support and the chance for a grant, thanks to a new scheme launched by the Kent Foundation and funded by Dartford Borough Council.

On Wednesday, November 9th, Council members met with mentors and local businesses at the Hill Hub in Dartford to launch the Young Entrepreneurs Support Programme which has been funded by a grant of £21,100 from the Council.

The programme is open to anyone aged 18 to 30 who has a business idea, or is already trading and wants to grow their company. It provides workshops, support tailored to their business needs and full access to the Kent Foundation’s business mentoring service.

Those who sign up will also have an exciting opportunity to make a Dragons Den style pitch to access a small business grant to help these entrepreneurs get off the ground.

Lead Member for Business Cllr Avtar Sandhu MBE said: “There are so many talented young business people in Dartford and we want to nurture their growing talents. This programme can help turn a side hustle or part time hobby into a fully-fledged company by helping develop the essential skills needed to create a successful business.”

Leader of the Council Jeremy Kite MBE said: “Things might be difficult financially at the moment, but that shouldn’t get in the way of entrepreneurs creating the next big business – it’s our duty as a Council to support them, who knows, maybe the next Alan Sugar could be from Dartford.

“Offering small business grants and Dragons' Den style pitching scenarios is a great opportunity for budding business owners. When it comes to supporting local businesses, I’m in.”

Stuart Tanton, Director of Kent Foundation said: “We are very pleased to be delivering this exciting programme for young people in Dartford, through the support of Dartford Council. The opportunity this creates for young people in Dartford who want to start their own enterprise is going to create not just a short term achievement in kickstarting new enterprises, but enforce Dartford as a great place to start and grow a business. Our plan is to embed this support in the local community through a network of volunteer business mentors, and we look forward to creating key partners in the area to achieve this."

Sign up to the Young Entrepreneurs Support Programme by visiting https://www.kentfoundation.org/

Published: 11th November 2022