We are The RED Group
RED - Rapid Enterprise Development
We make enterprise accessible to all. Our vision is to inspire and support people with lived experience of disability, their families, friends and partner organisations to engage in the world of enterprise.
Our mission is to accompany people with a lived experience of disability on a journey to turn dreams, hobbies and ideas into viable enterprises. This is achieved by creating awareness of enterprise opportunities, providing information, support, guidance, business planning and development resources.
The Rapid Enterprise Development (RED) Program offers an innovative and creative ways to fast-track the development of enterprises created by people with disability. Essentially RED is about developing real employment opportunities by creating an enterprising culture with the disability community.
At RED, we believe that enterprise has a key contribution to make towards the wellbeing of people with disability. RED is unique in combining supported self-employment and the NDIS. RED makes the link between supported self-employment and NDIS budgets.
By generating viable concepts for enterprises and combining this with creative use of the NDIS, RED provides individuals with a real economic alternative to traditional day activities.
We can provide individuals with a real alternative to traditional day activities, by generating viable concepts for very-small enterprises and combining this with creative use of customised NDIS budgets. Income generated from the enterprise can be used to support business growth and to supplement personal finances.
How we define disability
‘The social model of disability is a way of viewing the world, developed by people with disability. The social model of disability says that people are disabled by barriers in society, such as buildings not having a ramp or accessible toilets, or people’s attitudes, like assuming people with disability can’t do certain things. The medical model of disability says people are disabled by their impairments or differences, and looks at what is ‘wrong’ with the person, not what the person needs. We believe that the medical model of disability creates low expectations and leads to people losing independence, choice and control in their lives. The social model helps us recognise barriers that make life harder for people with disability. Removing these barriers creates equality and offers people with disability more independence, choice and control.’
– Australian Federation of Disability Organisation
How we began
Rapid Enterprise Development (RED) emerged in the UK from the work of Keith Bates and Guy Turnbull in response to the need to provide better enterprise support options for disabled people. Keith and Guy came together through their work in social firm, social enterprise and co-operative development to redesign the way enterprise support and training was conceptualised.
Keith’s work developed from a supported employment perspective where he had been supporting people with learning disabilities to establish worker co-ops as a way to create alternative routes in employment. This complimented Guy’s background in Co-operative development, including creating businesses designed to employ disabled people. The two worked together to open the world of entrepreneurship to a wider audience.
Originally focusing on training for disabled people to set up their own enterprise, the basis of their approach to job-creation was the RED (Rapid Enterprise Development) workshop which sought to offer an interactive space, support and activities to help disabled people work out the basics of a business idea, feasibility, planning and research.
The RED approach immediately started to have an impact and local authorities, voluntary sector organisations and others quickly saw the benefits of an approach that combined enterprise facilitation with employment support. In recognition of the need to expand the RED offer to raise the capacity, skills and aspirations of support workers, the RED training suite expanded to include workshops around business innovation, assessment and market research.
Whilst the RED workshops remain part of a wider journey for people with learning disabilities and others interested in exploring self-employment and small business ownership, RED continues to engage with the wider policy and infrastructure debate to ensure that supported self-employment becomes a sustainable option for disabled people.