Grants worth a total of £500,000 are available each year through Inspiring Women in Enterprise to support organisations which deliver initiatives to help women entrepreneurs, including delivering enterprise education, innovative networking events and developing entrepreneurial knowledge.
In two previous funding rounds, 21 organisations were awarded grants and they in turn have supported scores of women in a vast range of different ways.
GrowBiz, a Scottish organisation that has already received a grant through Inspiring Women in Enterprise, provides support to anyone wishing to start or develop a business or social enterprise.
Women already make up 70% of their clients and Growbiz want to help more to get into business, particularly those who suffer from additional challenges such as health issues, disabilities or unemployment.
The Growbiz holds regular group meetings in venues across Eastern and Highland Perthshire to provide opportunities for local female business owners and start-ups to share information, challenges and advice, and to receive mutual support from their peers.
RBS developed Inspiring Enterprise as a way to nurture businesses of all shapes and sizes, in every sector of the economy. Starting a business can be both exciting and challenging, and entrepreneurs and businesses need the right combination of support, advice and funding to succeed.
A recently published report, RBS Enterprise Tracker (PDF 332KB), shows that 61% of women agree that a fear of failure would stop them starting up in business, while only 37% of women feel they have the skills and ability needed to start their own business – compared with 47% of men.
Apply for a grant
Applying for a grant is simple and can be done through the Inspiring Enterprise website. The application window is open from Monday, 30 September, and will be open for a period of two weeks during which organisations can submit their application. Full details of eligibility criteria are available on the website.
Thom Kenrick, Head of Sustainability Programmes, RBS Group said: "We are delighted to be opening our Inspiring Women in Enterprise fund for a third round of applications. There are so many support organisations out there doing fantastic work but they need a little financial support to be able to expand their reach and influence.
"Together with them, we can encourage more people, in more communities, to explore enterprise, build new skills and ultimately start up and succeed in business."