Social Enterprise Fund

Description: To support both the creation of new social enterprises and the development of existing social enterprises in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, we are excited to launch the Social Enterprise Fund.

The aims of this Fund are to:
1. Create employment, apprenticeships and training opportunities.
2. Enhance skills, leading to the development of services and products which increase trade and reinvestment.
3. Make a positive contribution to sustainability.

Type: Core costs & project costs

Status: Closed

Maximum: Start up - The average grant under this strand is £5,000. Step-up - The average grant investment available under this strand is £20,000. Higher awards are available.

Opening: 08/04/2021

Deadline:

Notes: Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.


Social enterprises are businesses that change the world for the better. Like other businesses, social enterprises aim to make a profit but invest or donate their profits to create positive social change.

The social enterprise sector is vibrant, innovative and growing. Start-up rates continue to surge with 42% of social enterprises under five years old, new product introductions running at 20% higher than for conventional SMEs and 77% of social enterprises earning more than 75% of their income through trading. In Cornwall there are around 1,100 social enterprises, employing 13,200 people and engaging 30,000 volunteers.

To support both the creation of new social enterprises and the development of existing social enterprises in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, we are excited to launch the Social Enterprise Fund

The aims of this Fund are to:
1. Create employment, apprenticeships and training opportunities.
2. Enhance skills, leading to the development of services and products which increase trade and reinvestment.
3. Make a positive contribution to sustainability.

Participating organisations will (or intend to):
• have social aims at the core of their operations and governance
• be trading commercially
• use and retain their assets and/or profits for the benefit of residents and communities in Cornwall or the Isles of Scilly
• operate as a social enterprise, likely as a community interest company, or a community benefit society.

Understanding the unique differences between a start-up and established enterprise, the programme offers two forms of investment:

1. Start-up support
This funding strand offers support for core costs. It is available to new start-ups in the early stages of their trading seeking to turn great ideas into reality.

The average grant investment available under this strand is £5,000, although higher awards are available.

As part of the grant assessment process, we will seek to understand how your enterprise will grow, create employment and training opportunities and/or improve the skills of volunteers.

To be eligible to apply under the Start-up stream we would encourage the below guidance to be in place:

  • Clear social aims at the core of your governing documents
  • A bank account in the name of the organisation
  • All Safeguarding policies and procedures must be in place before any funds are committed
  • In the process or registered with Companies House
  • Best practice recommends a minimum of three unrelated Directors, whilst we would encourage best practise we understand this may not be possible in the early stages

2. Step-up support:
This funding stream is designed for social enterprises that are already up and running. This funding strand offers support for core costs. The focus is on building stronger businesses for the future.
Please note this funding will usually be available for one year. In some circumstances, consideration will be given to awards of up to three years for organisations that offer the potential for high impact and high growth.

As part of the grant assessment process, we will seek to understand how your enterprise will grow, create employment and training opportunities and/or improve the skills of volunteers.

The average grant investment available under this strand is £20,000, although higher awards are available.

To be eligible to apply under the Step-up stream please ensure you have read and meet the following criteria – Social Enterprise Fund criteria

Whether you are starting on your social enterprise journey or several years down the line, we would love to hear from you.

Guidelines: Downloadable copy of guidelines

Online application form: Apply here