Unbeknown to a lot of people in Northern Ireland, there are a lot of different investment routes available to us within these economic challenging times, its just a matter of doing a little research, asking those who are in the know, and your ready to go.

Within my Masters, I am trying to create a product that can be used in our busy everyday lives, but with my skills being limited in terms of the product development, I thought looking into grants and possible-funding routes would be beneficial.

On my quest I quickly found out multiple avenues that I can try:

- Propel Programme (20k)

- E-Synergy Mini Grant (10k)

- E-Synergy Standard Grant (up to 40k)

- 25K Award (up to 25k)

- University of Ulster Proof of Principle Support (10k)

- University of Ulster Proof of Concept Support (up to 100k)

- Santander Entrepreneurship Awards (up to 20k)

- Enterprise NI – *New* Regional Start £1000

- Invest NI

Applying for funding forms can be hard, you are asked questions that you have never been asked before, but this is positive, as it makes you think about how you are going to solve that problem, and in all makes you more prepared for what you are trying to achieve.

Once the your first funding form is filled in, every form after that gets easier, there is certain content that lends itself to multiple forms and helps you create a good foundation to continue with.

This semester I applied for my first funding application with the Santander Entrepreneurship Awards and was lucky to be accepted as the winner within the University of Ulster stages. My application has now been submitted to the next stage and new opportunities are already arising. Applying for this has really given me the confidence to continue looking for more possible opportunities that could benefit me and my product, it has also shown me to be optimistic of the opportunities out there, and readily available to us.

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