Mid and East Antrim Local Action Group Help and Advice
Below we have listed contacts and links to those that can provide additional help and advice on developing your business idea or expanding your business.
All applicants applying to the Community Measure must consult with Mid and East Antrim Borough Council to ensure their project idea ‘fits’ with the Community Plan. For some projects, Council must also be the Lead Partner. If you contact us we can direct you to the relevant person.
You will also need to submit a robust project plan to support your application.
Support and Advice
North Antrim Community Network
T: 028 2177 2100
The primary aims of North Antrim Community Network are to offer a community development service to its member groups and to focus on the practice of networking to allow community groups themselves to share knowledge and experience.
T: 028 9087 7777
Is a membership and representative umbrella body for the voluntary and community sector in Northern Ireland. It lobbies and campaigns to advance the interests of the people and communities that its members support. It offers a wide range of practical services, products and support to its members to help them do what they do best - find innovative solutions for social challenges.
South Antrim Community Network
T: 028 9447 8645
Provides community development support to communities within the council boroughs of Antrim, Newtownabbey and Carrickfergus Council Areas. NI Housing Executive Tel: 0344 892 0900 W: www.nihe.gov.uk Offers a range of services to people living in socially rented, privately rented and owner occupied accommodation as well as supporting and working with a number of other public bodies.
Community Evaluation NI
T: 028 9024 8005
CENI is a not-for-profit organisation providing evaluation support services to the voluntary and community sector and its funders.
Ulster Community Investment Trust
T: 028 9031 5003
Is a charity which provides loans exclusively to other third sector organisations such as community groups, charities, sports clubs and social enterprises in Northern Ireland.
Supporting Communities NI
T: 028 2564 5676
Is an independent charitable organisation which champions tenant and community participation by developing groups, supporting active citizenship and building cohesive communities.
NI Rural Woman’s Network
T: 028 8775 3389
A regional network established to articulate the voice of women in rural areas.
Mid & East Antrim Social Enterprise Hub
T: 028 2565 0989
Aims to tackle vacancy and community eyesores and the lack of local employment by encouraging social enterprise business start-up within local communities.
T: 01383 721 445
Seeks to improve the lives and wellbeing of people throughout the UK and the Republic of Ireland through influencing public policy and demonstrating innovative practice.
Rural Development Council
T: 028 8676 6980
Provides a range of development, support, training and delivery services for individuals, farmers, farm families, groups, communities, public and private sector organisations. Services can be provided within Northern Ireland or further afield.
Causeway Coast & Glens Heritage Trust
T: 028 2075 2100
Has the responsibility of promoting and enhancing the unique qualities of the Causeway Coast and Glens area. It aims to promote a sustainable tourism/ development industry for the benefit of visitors and the people who live and work here.
Ulster Garden Villages
T: 028 9049 1111
The society primarily allocates funds to projects within Northern Ireland that will have a positive impact in Northern Ireland.
Business Plan Templates
If you are starting up a new business, you must complete the “Go for it” Programme which is run by your Local Enterprise Agency: Ballymena Business Centre; LEDCOM; or Carrickfergus Enterprise (details below). You will receive help with putting your business plan together. This Programme is free to new businesses.
You must use the 3 year Enterprise NI/ Business Info NI template. This is available from the RDP office.
Support and Advice
Ballymena Business Centre
T: 028 2565 8616
Provides free advice and information to anyone interested in enterprise including students, community organisations and individuals within the Mid and East Antrim council area.
T: 028 9023 1221
Is responsible for the development of tourism and the marketing of Northern Ireland as a tourist destination to visitors within Northern Ireland and from the Republic of Ireland.
T: 028 2827 0742
Is a 'one-stop-shop' for economic development and enterprise. LEDCOM Charity group which includes LEDCOM, Chain HR, Business Led and Heritage Experience provides a wide range of services including managed workspace, business incubation/innovation support, business skills training, business and economic development consultancy, community economic development, information and advice , international business match making/trade missions, social enterprise development, and local partnership management/ administration services.
Mid and East Antrim Social Enterprise Hub
T: 028 2563 0989
Assists in the creation of new social enterprises by offering mentoring, training, workshops and office and retail space for test trading.
Rural Development Council (Rural Youth Prog)
T: 028 8676 6980
Is designed to recognise, nurture and develop the innovative and enterprising business ideas of young people aged 16-30 from targeted rural areas.
T: 028 9336 9528
Offers a comprehensive range of initiatives designed to assist those who want to start or grow their business. The Business Improvement Programme is available to businesses located within the Carrickfergus Borough. The Programme consists of the following elements: 1) Grow your own Business Programme (Business Mentoring); 2) Iconnect (ICT Mentoring); 3) Business Focus Seminars (Business Seminars); and, 4) Celebration of Enterprise (Networking Event).
Ulster Farmers Union
T: 028 9037 0222
Is the largest democratic voluntary organisation representing farmers and growers in Northern Ireland. The UFU takes a close interest in rural affairs and services, and works with politicians both in the U.K. and internationally, and other groups and organisations to advance rural interests.
Princes Trust Enterprise Programme
T: 028 9074 5454
Can offer financial and mentoring support to start a business or mentoring support to secure goals in employment, education or training. Aimed at young people aged 18-30 who are unemployed or working less than 16 hours.
As the regional business development agency, Invest NI's role is to grow the local economy. They do this by helping new and existing businesses to compete internationally, and by attracting new investment to Northern Ireland.
DCAL (Sport/Leisure/Culture/Arts Projects)
T: 028 9025 8825
Is responsible for the central administration and promotion of sport in Northern Ireland and the administration of Sport NI.
T: 028 7776 3555
Provides training, business loans and premises for start-up businesses. Tourism
Dept. of Employment & Learning
T: 028 9025 7777
Objectives are to promote economic, social and personal development through high quality learning, research and skills training; and to help people into employment and promote good employment practices.