School of Business

Aspiring Entrepreneurs with Disability Development Programme

The Aspiring Entrepreneurs with Disability Development Programme is offered in collaboration with Ability Connect. The online training programme has been designed to introduce knowledge and skills for aspiring entrepreneurs with a disability, to help them start up or develop their own business.

You’ll build valuable peer networks in addition to learning from business experts about the four key pillars to starting up a business:

  • Pillar one: business model and innovation
  • Pillar two: financial planning
  • Pillar three: Digital and social media marketing
  • Pillar four: Building resilient entrepreneurial mindset

Programme content has been created as a result of a research project conducted by University of Leicester and Ability Connect which identified essential developmental needs.


Benefits of the Programme

After attending these practical training sessions, participants will gain the following skills and knowledge:

Pillar 1: Business model and innovation

  • Develop knowledge and understanding of business model components and their inter-relationships.
  • Develop knowledge and understanding of the inter-relationships between the external environment (including technological changes) and the value propositions that underpins the business. 

Pillar 2: Financial planning

  • Understand cash flow planning and analysis for start-ups.
  • Understand budget creation for start-ups.
  • Identify sources of finance for start-up and practical ways to secure funding.

Pillar 3: Digital and social media marketing

  • Distinguish between different forms of social media (CGM, UGC, SEO, PPC, forums, brand communities, wikis, and social networks) and marketing contexts in which they are used.
  • Develop skills for creating, delivering and communicating value by using digital marketing tools and social media platforms.
  • Develop effective approaches for propagating ideas and messages across social networks.

Pillar 4: Building resilient entrepreneurial mindset

  • Understand the importance of resilience in the current societal context.
  • Understand the role of empathy, compassion, and advocacy in attaining resilience.
  • Familiarise with tools, both for individuals and community, that help foster resilience

Programme dates and times

The training will take place over two days (4 hours per day) and will be delivered online. You will be encouraged to reflect on your experience of setting up a business, if relevant, and what you would like to achieve from the programme.

Stay in touch to be notified to be notified of new start dates for this programme by contacting 

Eligibility and funding criteria

Fully funded places are currently available to participants attending the February 2024 cohort. This work has been supported by the Economic and Social Research Council [ES/X004732/1].

With additional thanks across the programme to date for funding and support from the ESRC Impact Accelerator Account, LIAS - Leicester Institute for Advanced Studies and CCEF - Centenary Community Engagement Fund, the University of Leicester.

Participant feedback (May 2023 cohort)

“I liked everything to do with it. It was designed for people with disabilities. I would recommend anybody to actually do this course… was just enjoyable. A good group of people and good speakers."

"The programme provides an opportunity to network and to share ideas. I also like the fact that the programme was holistic, because your modules covered from planning…..from the idea perspective to the mindset to manage it"

“I think really the programme was a very accessible, very compassionate yet professional way of learning…. the style of presenting was fantastic too. The tutors were very considerate, very patient, detailed but not overwhelming. And that's really important.”

Contact us

Email us on to find out more and to receive notifications when further programme start dates are confirmed.

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