Social impact boost for female founders

IMPACT Community Services Managing Director Tanya O'Shea will be one of the experts featured in the 14 week CQUniversity iActivate: Regional Female Founder Accelerator sessions. Pictured: Tanya accepts the Australian Scholarships Foundation's Outstanding Leader Award

Female founders across regional Queensland can boost the social impact of their businesses thanks to a unique initiative from CQUniversity.

The iActivate: Regional Female Founder Accelerator is a 14 week program curated by women to address the specific challenges of business and social impact in regional Queensland.

Sessions feature experienced social impact leaders including IMPACT Community Services Managing Director Tanya O’Shea whose team recently won Small Operator of the Year at the 2023 Changemaker Awards.

Tanya was also recently received the Australian Scholarships Foundation's Outstanding Leader award.

CQU Social Innovation Program Manager Ashley Clarke said the program had generous external funding and offered an exciting and empowering opportunity to new and emerging female entrepreneurs.   

“Whether you’re still in the early stages, with a seed of an idea, or less than five years into growing your business, the Regional Female Founder Accelerator gives you the skills, support and connection to grow and thrive,” Ashley said.

Applications are now open with space for just 24 regional women to participate in weekly business development and coaching sessions.  

A generous subsidy means each participant pays just $426 for the full program (valued at $1540 per participant).

“iActivate has made a huge impact in communities like Townsville, Bundaberg, Cairns, Rockhampton and Toowoomba, where local people are tackling local problems with the impact-led businesses they designed and developed through the iActivate program,” Ashley said.

“We know the regions are full of passionate people who want to address the big issues in their communities, and this Regional Female Founder Accelerator provides a new platform and network to help local women start building practical, creative, business-based solutions.”

Analysis from the Queensland Social Enterprise Council shows every successful Australian social enterprise creates an average of 15 jobs, generating three dollars for every dollar of investment.

Applications are now open and close on 1 August, register here.