20 March 2020

Newry, Mourne & Down District Council – Business Support more Important then ever…

Newry, Mourne and Down District Council has insisted that the disruption caused by the Coronavirus makes it more important than ever to provide support to the local business community. The business support initiatives provided by the Council will continue, with technology being used to ensure that all elements of the programmes are delivered safely and in line with Public Health Agency advice.

Currently the Council is taking registrations for the NMD Business Growth Programme which is open to any business in the Council area and involves a tailored programme of one-to-one mentoring, networking and targeted workshop events. The project is part funded by Invest Northern Ireland and the European Regional Development Fund under the Investment for Growth & Jobs Northern Ireland (2014 -2020) programme.

Council Chairman Councillor Charlie Casey says the Council is fully aware of the impact of the Covid-19 crisis on the local economy.

“The coronavirus crisis is of course a major health issue but it also having a devastating economic impact with almost every business impacted to some extent. While the Executive is putting in place some support measures including financial assistance, we believe it is vital that the Council’s own support programmes continue as well. So we will continue to deliver the Business Growth Programme and we can do safely while protecting the health of our own team and the businesses taking part.

“That means that workshops will be done remotely, using the latest video conferencing platforms. One to one mentoring will be done using FaceTime or via good old fashioned phone calls and direct personal contact will be dispensed with for the foreseeable future.

“We also have the flexibility built into our programmes which allow us to focus on how SMEs can adapt by moving their offering online, facilitating home working for staff and by employing technology.

“It is important that as a Council we stand behind our local business community.  The NMD Business Growth Programme is still accepting new registrations and as businesses look for support in order to survive and thrive, I would encourage them to register on the NMD Business Growth Programme.”

Businesses can register for business support via the programme by the website https://nmdbusiness.org/growing-your-business/