Testimonials ACORNS 9

Participating on ACORNS 9 meant that I had a space where I could find my feet as a business woman, and grow and explore possibilities in a supported, safely guided way. It offered a whole new dimension to my own learning and I am so grateful for how it was structured and paced. That sense of belonging in a group of such inspiring business people is something I value so highly and look forward to being involved in and giving back to in the future.

Anna McGrath, Shine Through Supports and Connected Childhood

I would highly recommended ACORNS to anyone in business. My business was relatively new when I started the programme and it provided me with structure and guidance in running it at such an early stage. Running your own business can feel overwhelming and daunting at times, but with the support of my group, Lead Entrepreneur, and the wider community nothing ever appeared insurmountable or challenging.  I was able to build an invaluable network of other female entrepreneurs and learn from them while simultaneously developing my skills, which took my business from strength to strength.

Anna Sutcliffe, House of Achill

I found the support from my fellow participants and from my Lead Entrepreneur invaluable.  It is an amazing group to be a part of and will really help any entrepreneur to focus on their business and find out what they can achieve. I would highly recommend it.

Aoife Keogh, The Grazing Goat

As a proud participant of ACORNS 9, I cannot express enough gratitude for the incredible support and inspiration I have found within this group.  Every one of the ladies within ACORNS brings a unique perspective and guidance, creating an amazing place for growth and encouragement.  The support within the group creates an atmosphere to drive and succeed.  This support has not only boosted my own business endeavours but has also provided a nurturing space to grow personally and professionally. This group stands as a testament to the power of collaboration and empowerment among women in business. Applying for ACORNS has been one of the best decisions I’ve made for my career. Whether you are just starting out or looking to expand your business, this group offers a wealth of resources, connections, and unwavering support. I am endlessly inspired by our shared journeys and the remarkable achievements we accomplish together.

Caroline Fry, Caroline Fry Enterprises

ACORNS has been a fantastic experience which has been invaluable to the growth and development of my business and for myself as a newly established female entrepreneur. Our Lead Entrepreneur was very generous with her time and knowledge, and encouraged me to implement changes required to further advance my business sales and staff growth. An invaluable opportunity!

Catherine Mackey, Mind Your Language

ACORNS is unlike any other programme out there. It guides you, supports you, and encourages you during your entrepreneurial journey. The genuine and refreshing relationships with other women entrepreneurs make you part of a very generous and open-minded community. I sincerely cannot recommend ACORNS enough to any woman out there who is leading her business venture.

Diletta Panero, DP Language Services

I would highly recommend ACORNS. It is a wonderfully inspiring community of super talented women in business from rural Ireland. I made great progress in my business, learned from my group, Lead Entrepreneur and the people that I met. It is a little bubble outside of your business where you can be inspired, take powerful action and meet wonderful people.

Dorothy McDonagh, Sidekick Media

I was a member of ACORNS 9. It was with the help of my ACORNS Lead Entrepreneur and my group of female entrepreneurs that I was able to get so much more clarity on my business. Before joining ACORNS, I was targeting a lot of different markets. ACORNS gave me the confidence and clarity to focus on my specific market. This was scary however, as I thought I would lose sales as a result. My group challenged and supported me and ultimately my business has grown since.

Edel Walsh, Edel Walsh Coaching and Consulting

Starting a business can be lonely and you can regularly question yourself. It is great to meet like-minded women who inspire and encourage you. The programme is an amazing way to forge friendships, get feedback from a “board” of smart women with varying experience and perspectives, and get some frameworks in place.

Elaine Crosse, Bánór

It is so important to surround yourself with a network who are also on an entrepreneurial journey as they can not only support you through the highs and lows, (and appreciate them), they can offer solid, practical advice to help you move forward. I received this from my ACORNS Lead Entrepreneur and all the wonderful ladies in my group but more than that they could see my ambition for the company and helped me look at the macro and micro steps I need to take to get me there. From a mindset perspective I found the programme extremely helpful. Struggling with imposter syndrome and fear, I was inspired by the women around me and stories from the ACORNS alumni.  I feel much more confident moving forward with my business and I know ACORNS is a network that I can always turn to.

Emma Duffy, Ravallon

ACORNS 9 has been invaluable to me as a person and as a small business owner. From the initial day in the Mullingar Park Hotel, I felt very privileged and lucky to have been chosen to participate in this programme after listening to the stories from previous participants. Everything Paula said on that first day happened, the sense of community, the support and friendships created within our groups has been amazing. The Lead Entrepreneurs are amazing business women in their own right and our Lead was so supportive and no question was ever too silly on our round tables, it was always an open and honest conversation amongst our Louth/Meath team and it was good to know that there was always someone at the table that had a similar issue as you. Our group have already set up meetings so we can keep supporting each other going forward and helping each other out where possible. ACORNS 9 has been one of the most positive experiences of my life and it’s great to know that ACORNS will continue to support us for the foreseeable future.

Fiona Lynch, Almond Rose Designs

The ACORNS programme has transformed The Family Edit, helping to bring in a new stage of automation that streamlines our operations and enhances our efficiency. This shift has boosted my business confidence, empowering me to tackle new challenges and grow the business.   Integral to ACORNS’ appeal is its accountability framework, which kept us focused and progressing towards our goals.   However, the true heart of the programme lies in the deep connections forged within our group. These relationships provide invaluable support, enrich our journey with diverse perspectives, and foster a collaborative spirit that amplifies our collective success.   ACORNS has been a wonderful source of growth and connection for me and The Family Edit.

Gemma Kingston, The Family Edit

I would highly recommend ACORNS. I can’t believe the number of female entrepreneurs that exist in Ireland. I applaud the energy that they have, to grow business while raising families.  Equally, I am proud to say I am part of a wonderful organisation that helps and encourages females from all business background.  Huge thanks to ACORNS and everyone involved.

Ger O Connor, Fuchsia Bell Chartered Accountants

I found ACORNS 9 to be an extremely amazing experience. The support I received throughout the 6-month period was outstanding. My group has been the needed safe space for all business pains, headaches and problems. Each session and round table discussion constructed an environment where we felt we were in a safe space to discuss all of our business successes, shortcomings, questions and personal struggles. Although from madly diverse sectors, each member always had a solution or knew of someone with the solution to every single issue our businesses encountered. To me, ACORNS truly stands out as a business accelerator programme. The guidance and camaraderie among fellow female entrepreneurs in the programme were invaluable. I feel equipped with not just knowledge but also a supportive network that I can rely on as I continue to grow my business. Thank you, ACORNS, for developing and providing such an excellent initiative, I will be forever grateful.

Hollianne Phelan, Cotone Collection

Joining the ACORNS 9 programme was a game-changer for me. With expert guidance from our Lead Entrepreneur, I gained invaluable knowledge, built strong connections, and joined an amazing community of like-minded women. The mentorship provided has been essential in developing both my business and personal growth. I’m truly grateful to Paula Fitzsimons and her team for their hard work and for creating such an empowering environment for rural women entrepreneurs. ACORNS has given me not only the practical tools I need to improve my business but also the inspiration to dream bigger and aim higher.

-Katie Diffley, Rebel Rising

Words cannot describe how valuable the support of my ACORNS group has been. Watching my peers has inspired and motivated me as I have shaped my business. I expected to receive guidance and direction from our sessions but hadn’t counted on 8 champions of support. I feel I am leaving with a clearer picture of where my business needs to be and what I have to do to get there. Thanks to our wonderful Lead Entrepreneur our sessions helped focus my activities and I am on my way to achieving my first year goals. I look forward to remaining part of the ACORNS community while I continue to learn and grow.

Kelly-Anne Quinn, Life Planning

When I think of ACORNS I think of words like Assistance, Confidence, Opportunities, Rethinking/Reflection, Navigation and Success because these are all the things I needed and got from ACORNS, not to mention everything else in between. It’s a home every entrepreneur needs even if they don’t know or believe it.

Laura Byrne, At The White Glove Concierge

Participating in the ACORNS programme has been instrumental in driving my business forward in such a short space of time. Being in a group of ambitious entrepreneurs, that celebrate your successes, share your struggles and motivate you to believe in yourself and the value of your business, is inspiring. Having a Lead Entrepreneur That has walked the path before you, offering guidance and support is invaluable.   ACORNS helps you set solid business foundations on which to grow your business. I highly recommend to anyone who wants to grow their businesses with support and accountability.

Letitia Fealy, Lotus Optimisation

ACORNS is led by experienced Lead Entrepreneurs who bring a wealth of practical expertise to each session. There are great opportunities to network with other rural female entrepreneurs.

Margaret Leahy, Fable Tours

Participation in the ACORNS programme has contributed greatly towards the more efficient day to day running and overall direction of mojo&co. We’ve observed a rise in our client base encompassing both retail and corporate sectors, along with progress in product development and forthcoming collaborations.   I feel very lucky to have gained confidence, knowledge and accountability through the ACORNS experience, helped by the support and friendship of a fantastic group of peers and Lead Entrepreneurs.

Maureen Hoey, mojo&co

As an entrepreneur, finding a supportive community that understands the unique challenges women face can be transformative. ACORNS has been exactly that for me—a place of empowerment, learning, and connection. Joining the ACORNS programme provided me with invaluable resources and a network of inspiring women entrepreneurs all across Ireland. The mentorship and peer support have been crucial in helping me navigate my business journey, making it not only more manageable but also more successful. I am incredibly grateful for the growth opportunities that ACORNS has offered me, and I highly recommend it to any woman looking to start or expand her business in a nurturing and motivating environment.

Megan White, Runsafe

I took part in ACORNS 9 and over six months my business has benefited immensely from my Lead Entrepreneur and my round table sessions. Upon completion I have a clear plan and vision for my business. Some of this plan has been set in motion while participating on the programme. I highly recommend ACORNS and I look forward to continuing meetings with my round table participants.

Michelle Power, Wren and Mabel

My journey with ACORNS has been nothing short of transformative. As a solopreneur, navigating the intricacies of business alone often felt daunting and isolating. However, ACORNS taught me the power of seeking support and reframing challenges as opportunities for growth. The most invaluable aspect of the ACORNS programme for me was our Lead Entrepreneur’s guidance. With her expertise, I learned to assemble pieces I wouldn’t have considered on my own. Her insights proved instrumental in reshaping my approach and propelling my venture forward. In addition to the invaluable insights gained, the connections forged with fellow participants, especially the remarkable women I’ve met, have enriched this journey beyond measure. These bonds extend beyond the programme, promising ongoing collaboration and support.  Being a part of ACORNS has been an absolute delight, and I’m immensely grateful for the opportunity to be a part of such an empowering community.

Munaza Gilmore, The Brow Movement

ACORNS is an incredibly well thought out programme aimed at female entrepreneurs. Wellness At The Coach House participated in ACORNS 9 and the business has strengthened and grown thanks to the support network of Paula and her team of Lead Entrepreneurs. I would recommend this programme to any female business owner looking for strategic direction, mentoring and a like minded community to elevate you and your business.

Nicola Flanagan, Wellness At The Coach House

It has been an absolute honour to have been part of the ACORNS 9 programme. To have been surrounded with supportive and knowledgeable women who all have your back just made it an amazing 6 months. It is not easy to choose the route of being an entrepreneur but with the ACORNS programme it reminds you why you did choose it and that it is possible when you surround yourself with the right people. The best advice I could give anyone is if you are thinking of applying there is no need to think twice, just do it!

Orla Brosnan, Clippity Clop Therapeutic Horse Riding And Activities

I would highly recommend becoming involved in ACORNS. I felt honoured as soon as I got the acceptance email and I knew this was going to be something special. Paula and the team did not disappoint. I’ll never forget the warm welcome and acknowledgement of being a businesswoman (which sometimes I need to remind myself I am). One of the first things Paula addressed was the imposter syndrome most people felt in the room and this immediately put me at ease. It didn’t take long to really feel at home from day one. The inspiration, support and encouragement was just what I needed and I’m ever so grateful for the opportunity to have taken part. Anyone thinking about applying for ACORNS, my advice would be just do it, you won’t regret it. You get what you put into the programme and so much more!

Rachel Adams, The Little Fox

ACORNS gave me an opportunity to meet like-minded women who support and encourage each other on their journeys.

Ruth Gallagher, Wild Beans

The ACORNS programme has been instrumental in strengthening the foundational aspects of my business. It provided an invaluable opportunity to connect with a dynamic network of female entrepreneurs. This programme not only encouraged me to concentrate on the core fundamentals of my business but also offered the chance to share ideas and draw inspiration from other remarkable businesswomen. The support of this network, particularly while balancing business and family life, has been indispensable and more impactful than words can convey. Participating in ACORNS was truly a game-changing experience.

Siobhán O’Leary, SOL Learning

ACORNS is the gentle push we all need.  A supportive, safe group that help drive you and your business on.  Every female entrepreneur needs this in their lives!

Stef McSherry, Kinderama/Irish Fairy Tails

ACORNS 9 was truly an amazing opportunity and I strongly encourage participation.  Securing a spot in this esteemed programme couldn’t have happened at a more opportune moment. The past 6 months have truly been a remarkable journey, feeling grateful for the inspiring circle of entrepreneurs I’ve been part of. I am excited to witness the endeavours of these remarkable women unfold.

Theresa Sheehy, Theresa’s Country Supplies

ACORNS provided me with the confidence, belief and network to grow my business, to develop and explore new avenues for revenue income and it kept me on target. It inspired me to push myself further, helped me to believe in myself and reduced my sense of imposter syndrome. It was such a worthwhile journey for me personally and professionally as I embark on my business journey.

-Una Ryan, REMind Ed®