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  • Writer's picturePippa Hackett

ACORNS Community Forum 2023


Pictured with Paula Fitzsimons, National Director ACORNS and the ACORNS Team.

Rural Women are leading the way in business across the country.


I was thrilled to give the opening address at the ACORNS Community Forum at Mullingar Park Hotel today.


ACORNS provides peer support and learning for women with start-up businesses.

Over 400 female entrepreneurs have taken part in ACORNS in the 8 years of the programme. The large attendance and positive vibe of the Community Forum today shows how successful this programme is. I’m delighted with the support that my Department provides - it really is money well spent.

I love hearing all the inspiring stories from all the Acorn entrepreneurs.

The event today brought both current and previous ACORNS participants together. I strongly believe in the potential of rural women to offer and lead on solutions to economic, social and environmental challenges. Every time I meet an ACORNS participant, I see first-hand the value of this programme, and the positive impact on enterprise development in rural areas, and on their own personal development too.


The ACORNS initiative is centered around interactive round table sessions that are facilitated, on a voluntary basis, by female entrepreneurs known as ‘Lead Entrepreneurs’, who have started and successfully grown businesses in rural Ireland.


I truly believe women are the change-makers needed in this ever challenging world. Everywhere I go I see women leading the way with innovation and imagination, solving problems for people, society and businesses, and bringing new life and new jobs into rural areas. What’s not to like!




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