​The Department of Local Government and Communities (DLGC) provides scholarships each year for women to participate in the Curtin Growth Ignition program, organised by the Curtin Centre for Entrepreneurship.

The five and a half day intensive program prepares participants for taking their idea to the business world and comprises a blend of practical teaching sessions, mentor sessions and advice and support from leading entrepreneurs and innovators.

Below are some of the recipients of the DLGC scholarships and their business ideas.

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Marianna Fernandez MelgarEKU Power Drives Australia
EKU Power Drives Australia is a business that will distribute an energy storage hybrid system used in mobile heavy duty equipment, replacing the use of diesel with natural gas. The system was developed in Germany and will be adapted to suit trucks used in the mining industry in Western Australia. Marianna felt empowered, motivated and supported to pursue her business idea while completing the Ignition program. Without the scholarship, Marianna would not have been able to afford the Ignition program.
Nadine GyllhamnAir-Snooze Pty Ltd
Air-Snooze Pty Ltd has developed a product that is designed to minimise discomfort for economy class airline passengers due to space restrictions and upright chair positions. The product includes a hook-on neck pillow, lumbar back support, armrest padding, zip-on blanket and seat cover. Nadine undertook the Ignition course to give her more confidence and motivation to progress her business and to validate her business idea. During the program, Nadine had a great mentor group and facilitator and met a number of people in the product design industry.
Hilary LaneViral Block
Viral Block is a nasal balm which is applied to the base of the nostrils several times a day and helps prevent cold and flu viruses from entering the body via the nasal passages. The product has been developed by a pharmacist and is extremely popular with patients and their friends and families. Viral Block is particularly helpful when people are in close proximity to others, such as while flying or working in open-plan offices. Hilary appreciated the opportunity to make contacts through Ignition and to spend the week of the program with like-minded people. Ignition particularly helped her to understand the process for taking her product to market.
Joanna GranichDental-health app for children with developmental disabilities
Joanna’s business idea is an educational augmented reality (AR) dental-health mobile app for children with developmental disabilities (DD) such as autism or intellectual disability. Children with DD are at-risk of poor oral health due to complex communicative impairments and sensory sensitivities to things such as lights, sounds, touch, taste, movement. These sensitivities can compromise their ability to understand surroundings, cooperate and tolerate self-care tasks or health checks. Sensory desensitisation training in an AR gaming context will be delivered through a mobile app. Ignition helped Joanna to develop skills and confidence to take her business to the next stage. During the program, she was able to refine her business plan including financial plans so that she could pitch her business.
Yvonne LarsenGoBoat
GoBoat is a Danish concept which Yvonne will bring to Perth under a licence. It entails a fleet of small picnic boats powered by an electrical outboard and solar power. The engines are only 5-8 HP so will make minimal boat wash and are zero emission. The boats can be hired for two, four or six hours between dawn and dusk. Participating in Ignition gave Yvonne the confidence to speak in public and also helped her to better identify what she needed to focus on with her business idea.
Yael Berger-GudesSTEM hub for children and young adults
Yael’s business idea is to create a hub for children and young adults to foster a culture of entrepreneurship, innovative thinking and creativity to generate excitement towards science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). This will be done firstly by providing after school or during school hours programs for children. At a later stage, a space with a young and vibrant atmosphere will be created which will be used for school excursions and also serve young adults during day time or evening functions. Through the Ignition program Yael gained confidence in her ability to develop her ideas to be even bigger than she first planned. Without a scholarship, Yael doubts she would have been able to participate in the Ignition program.
Bianca PadburyBetter Pathways Australia
Better Pathways Australia specialises in training, development, consultancy and case management in the area of disability action plans, disability awareness, accessibility and inclusion also encompassing aged care and community services. The target market is public sector organisations including local government and private businesses. A mobile app will be developed to facilitate conversation amongst carers and others involved in meeting the needs of an individual with disability. This innovation has stemmed from a lack of cohesion around communication in the industry. It is the only business of its kind with a target market of Public Sector Organisations that are mandated to report on Disability Action Plan progress. Completing the course gave Bianca validation and encouragement to take her business idea to market.
Melanie BainbridgeThe Pack Australia
The Pack Australia is a web-based arts-to-market connector that enables local, original musicians in all genres to access new markets for their music.  It works by enabling musicians to engage directly with local venues that play recorded music under licence. The Pack Australia will enable listeners to be able to identify and access songs directly, using an e-commerce driven system, and allow musicians to create a band page on the site should listeners want to hear more of their music, find their next gig or otherwise engage with the music. Thanks to the Ignition course, Melanie now has confidence in herself and the confidence to pitch her business.  She started the course with an idea but left with a workable business plan, feeling empowered to achieve her goals.