Tag Archives: social entrepreneurs

What to do when setting up a social enterprise

On Friday, I attended my last Big Lottery event… ever!  Strive (a support network for social enterprises in East Lothian) held their quarterly network meeting. I couldn’t think of a better event to bring my Big Lottery outreach adventures to an end.

The network is full of inspiring social entrepreneurs looking to make a difference. It’s one of the most enthusiastic, supportive and positive member networks I’ve came across.

Setting up a social enterprise is a marvelous concept.  Passionate people who want to give back and do good tend to go down this route.  Social enterprises operate as a business.  However, any profits made are reinvested back into the organisation to support the people/communities they are helping.

Epic social enterprise example:

Social Bite- http://www.social-bite.co.uk

Support networks 

If you’re thinking of setting up a social enterprise, there are many organisations out there to support you. Here’s a few to get you started

http://www.strive.me.uk/about/ (East Lothian)

http://www.the-sse.org/schools/scotland/ (Scotland wide)

http://www.socialenterprisescotland.org.uk (Scotland wide)

http://www.firstport.org.uk (Scotland wide)

http://www.entrepreneurial-spark.com (apply to take part in a start up business programme)

https://fsen.squarespace.com/support-organisations/ (Scotland wide)

Funding

You can apply to Awards For All for start up costs, which includes running costs for the first year of your organisation:

http://www.biglotteryfund.org.uk/awardsforallscotland

Firstport also provide funding opportunities along with advice and business support:

http://www.firstport.org.uk

Funding Scotland offers an array of funding opportunities in Scotland:

http://www.fundingscotland.com

It can be a lonely and isolating process when you start a business.  Get yourself connected, both on and offline, and make sure you surround yourself with people who will always support you.

Happy social enterprising!

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