Social Entrepreneurs Ireland Elevator Awardee 2011
There are currently over 400,000 people facing long term unemployment in Ireland. This has a significant negative impact on the health and wealth of the nation. Migration has re-emerged as a serious issue with many highly educated young people left with no choice but to emigrate. Sustained unemployment restricts the chances of economic recovery. While many avenues have been taken already in order to stem the problem, there is limited awareness and attention paid to the significant role that Small and Medium enterprises (SMEs) play in the local and national economy and their potential to contribute to the recovery. Much is made of the large jobs announcements made by multinational corporations yet 650,000 people are employed by SMEs in communities around the country making this sector the backbone of our domestic economy.
Lucy Masterson founded Hireland over the kitchen table with a group of neighbours, based on the simple belief that we could all be a part of the economic recovery in Ireland and that recovery would come about one job at a time. To kickstart a burst of job creation, Hireland challenges small and medium enterprises around the country to think differently about survival and growth and act on it by taking one practical and achievable step: pledging to ‘hire one’. By challenging people to think about what they can do to improve their business by hiring, Hireland aims to change the mindset around the country from one of firing as a survival stategy to one of hiring as a growth strategy.
An Update from Lucy
It was a busy start to 2013 for Hireland. January saw the launch of the 2nd annual HIRE 1 campaign which was supported by over €250,000 of pro bono media support. To date, over 1000 jobs have been pledged on the website in 2013. In January, following 9 months of planning, Hireland in partnership with The Irish Times published a very special supplement dedicated to imagining Ireland in 2023. This HIrish Times initiative was a very successful publication and attracted guest writers such as Bono and Bob Geldof. Inspired by the special supplement, Taoiseach Enda Kenny requested 100 copies to accompany the annual St. Patrick’s Day parcel to The White House.
We are currently engaging with the Taoiseach’s office and some universities with a view to establishing the next phase of the programme – The Help One national mentor scheme.
To find out more, go to http://www.hireland.ie/