I found ACORNS a very supportive environment where I have made lifelong connections and friends. It has helped me analyse my business and make decisions based on that. ACORNS has helped me focus, set goals and stick to them. I feel that I have achieved more in the 6 months in ACORNS than in the previous 2 years and I know where I want my business to go.
-Ann Teehan, AnniePooh
I was privileged to be selected to participate in the ACORNS 7 programme. It has been incredibly inspiring to meet so many amazing business owners and like-minded people who strive to constantly improve their business and reach their goals. Paula Fitzsimons and her team, with their infectious positivity and drive, really pushed us to go out of our comfort zone and reach higher in our goals.
-Barbara O’Flaherty, Let’s Get Digital
Being part of ACORNS has been invaluable for my business. The peer support from other female business owners on the same journey as you is fantastic, as well as all the knowledge and experience of the Lead Entrepreneur. To be able to drill down on challenges you are facing and come up with solutions together has been an amazing support. Delighted to be part of the ACORNS community.
–Caroline Cullen, The Roots of Ireland
Having completed the ACORNS programme I feel motivated and empowered. Their peer support led approach has been invaluable, giving me the confidence to successfully drive my business forward into the future.
– Cathy Fitzgibbon, The Culinary Celt
I was lucky enough to be selected for ACORNS 7. From the first meeting with our group, I was delighted to be selected with some of the most amazing female entrepreneurs and a wonderful Lead Entrepreneur. I would recommend the ACORNS programme to any female entrepreneur who wants to surround themselves with an amazing support system and also to learn from other successful entrepreneurs.
-Claire Coughlan, The Rós Café
When I joined ACORNS, I found my tribe. The environment is supportive and the collective energy is positively contagious.
-Claire Keane, Second Street Bakeshop
ACORNS harnesses the power of positive thinking and collegiality among female entrepreneurs to allow rural businesses to grow and thrive with a sustained confidence and belief that there is always a way forward. That has been my experience of ACORNS and I would recommend anyone with a business idea and desire to follow it through to commit to the programme.
-Deirdre Corcoran, First Options Fertility
ACORNS has changed how I view my business and the way I run it as a business owner. It has focused my attention and energy, and made me take quicker action to get things done.
-Edel Hayes, Accelerate Accounting
The ACORNS programme did more for me and my business than I could have imagined! It’s hard when you’re starting out in business. It can be very lonely and confusing. Having a network of like-minded people to go through the ups and downs with really made such a difference. Although our businesses are different, our problems were similar and it was great to be able to support one another when we needed it most. A win for a member of your ACORNS group is a win for us all and I can’t wait to watch us all flourish. Having a Lead Entrepreneur to look up to but also to ask you the difficult questions and guide you is invaluable. My confidence in myself and how I communicate my business has developed so much in 6 months and I have this wonderful programme and network to thank for it.
-Ellen Egan, Dimple Design
Participating on ACORNS has provided such an incredible support at an early-stage of my business. Meeting my fellow group members has been a revelation and I look forward to many years of reconnecting ahead. I would highly recommend the ACORNS to any entrepreneur looking to make an impact on their business.
-Emer O’Keefe, Spotlight Skills
ACORNS is an incredible community filled with strong and creative women. The strength of the group lies in its variety. You get absolutely energized by the interactions and feel like you could take on the world. I feel like I have finally found my tribe.
-Emilie Mjorndal, Emilie’s
From the moment you begin the ACORNS programme you are welcomed into this supportive Community. Group sessions are full of ideas, encouragement and questions that will challenge and support you. Our Lead Entrepreneur created a wonderful atmosphere where we could share our struggles and our achievements. I look forward to remaining part of the ACORNS community!
-Feena McBride, The Arty Fox
ACORNS 7 has made a huge difference to me as a businesswoman and our business as a whole. It has given the network and support that is essential for growing a start up business. The educational workshops and interactive roundtable sessions have helped me make structured action plans for the future. It has given me the skills to aim high with our goals and given the belief that anything is possible. It is an experience I will be forever grateful for, to be surrounded by such inspiring businesswomen is an achievement in itself.
–Georgia Quealy, Praliné Chocolatiers
ACORNS provided me with a supportive and safe networking environment where I learned from others who were at a similar stage in business and I made many new and beneficial contacts.
-Helena Golden, Helena Golden Willow Woman
This programme is so worthwhile. I have learnt, grown and made connections during the ACORNS programme and would highly recommend taking part to any women in business.
-Kate Beckett, Optima Speech Therapy
I would highly recommend ACORNS to any female entrepreneur looking to grow their early stage start up. The programme creates a strong sense of community and provides significant support throughout the 6 months and beyond.
-Klara O’Leary, Care Box Collection
ACORNS is a structured, goal focused forum which helps you set out objectives at the start of the programme and supports and encourages the achievement of those objectives for a period of 6 months. My key takeaway from the programme was that the business itself is separate to the work the business does, and needs time, energy and dedication. I’d recommend the ACORNS programme to anyone starting out on their new business journey.
-Laura Stakelum, Stakelum Consultancy
The ACORNS experience was pretty special. It’s a community of like-minded females that support and lead each other. It’s an amazing programme. Starting out was a lonely experience, trying to do it all, but what I didn’t realise is that there is amazing support out there. I would recommend anyone thinking about running a business or at early stages to do this programme.
-Lisa Breslin, Imagine Lab
ACORNS has been an invaluable source of support and knowledge for me to grow and develop my business. It is a powerful tool for women to be supporting other women who are starting businesses within rural Ireland. Acorns truly is ‘ The board you can’t afford’, with the kindest, honest, most encouraging and open-minded people within its community.
–Lucianne Hare, Nourished in Nature Ireland
ACORNS is a fabulous experience for any businesswoman. The programme has inspired and motivated me to grow my business, while giving me access to a friendly, ambitious network of women across Ireland in every sector imaginable.
-Lyndsay Considine, LC Digital
ACORNS is a fantastic programme, run by women for women. In this nurturing environment I found myself unfurling from an artisan dress designer to launching a bridal collection and opening a showroom under my own label. Being amongst other entrepreneurial women really helped and encouraged me to find my inner businesswoman.
-Margaret Coyne, Margaret Coyne Design
ACORNS has been amazing for my business Pressed Flowers by Nell. It encouraged me to work on my business and not just in my business. The programme was really inspiring and It was lovely meeting so many other female entrepreneurs who all experience the same trials and tribulations while opening a business. I was so grateful for the opportunity to take part in ACORNS and would highly recommend it.
-Nell Stritch, Pressed Flowers by Nell
I highly recommend ACORNS for any woman in business, whatever stage of their business they are at. The sense of community the programme has built is amazing and it is a brilliant way to connect with other women in business.
-Niamh Dooley, BiaSol
ACORNS is an amazing programme that I would highly recommend if you are starting out in business. The supportive and learning environment is incredible and it makes for a very productive and focussed experience. The networking is invaluable and I feel privileged to be part of the ACORNS community.
-Nikki Curran, Career Clinic
ACORNS is an excellent support for woman considering starting up a business or already in business in Rural Ireland. I can’t highly recommend ACORNS enough – the expertise, advice and skills of this amazing network have helped me grow my Pilates and Wellness Business, with the added bonus of the wonderful long term friendships that have developed along the way. I’m looking forward to continuing with ACORNS well into the future.
-Olive Keyes, Pilates and Wellness -Irelands Heartlands Retreats.
ACORNS has given me the opportunity to address my concerns on opening a new business after being a stay at home mum for the past 10 years. It has helped me grow my idea and learn from experienced mentors and peers and given me the confidence to achieve my goals in an open, non-judgemental atmosphere of positivity, growth and friendship.
-Olivia Morrissey, Rostellan Dairy
ACORNS was a brilliant investment of my time and has provided many opportunities over the past 6 months to evaluate and refine product concepts and sales opportunities that provide the greatest return on investment. Being a female in business in rural Ireland during a pandemic was a lonely place, but I was encouraged and informed by the different perspectives of my fellow ACORNS and Lead Entrepreneurs when I crucially needed it. My confidence and knowledge have grown over the course of the programme and with my network of fellow ACORNS, I feel equipped to face challenges that The Burren Butcher will encounter over the next 5 years.
-Paula Hawes, The Burren Butcher
The ACORNS programme is a great opportunity for women to learn from and support each other in business. The openness, generosity of time/experience and knowledge of the Lead Entrepreneurs really is inspirational. The round table sessions were a great benefit to my business. It is so well worth the time investment – which will more than be repaid in your business and yourself.
-Paula Stapleton, The Makers
I would urge any woman who is procrastinating over a business idea or business plan to apply for the ACORNS programme. Here you will find lifelong friends, supporters and cheerleaders.
-Rita Maunsell, WAWETS Outdoor Wear
I would recommend ACORNS to anyone starting up a business. We have gained knowledge and confidence since attending our ACORNS sessions and its always great to have a listening ear for the many problems we face.
-Rosemary O’Shea, Tullahay Farm
ACORNS was an amazing experience. I felt like I developed a lot as a business owner, and I know where I see my business going moving forward. I felt very supported and happy to be part of a great community.
-Sacha Ben Elmansour, Zizo
ACORNS has been invaluable in terms of focussing my mind on taking actions that are going have the biggest impact on my business and profit. Having an open forum of other entrepreneurial-minded women who, although in very different sectors, who are going through the same things all young businesses go through, and with whom to bounce off (and test) ideas has been amazing!
-Sara Ross, FiorSó
My time in ACORNS has been just AMAZING!! Not only has it helped me with my business, but it has really helped me with my personal growth. I feel so supported and really part of the ACORNS family. I have added new services to my business due to the knowledge I have received throughout the programme. I can’t talk highly enough about ACORNS and everyone who is involved. Forever grateful!
-Sarah Fitzpatrick, Lakeland Digital