Action plan to boost Scotland’s burgeoning social enterprise sector
A scheme to encourage the launch of new companies that benefit and involve communities has seen annual funding double to £1 million for each of the next three years.
The Social Entrepreneurs Fund offers grants and business support to help people make their ‘social start-up’ aspirations a reality. Increased backing for the fund is just one of 92 commitments made in the 2017-2020 Social Enterprise Action Plan.
The plan follows publication of Scotland’s first-ever Social Enterprise Strategy, aimed at sustainably growing the sector over the next decade. Already, Scotland has more than 5,000 social enterprises – business that reinvest profits to address important issues like homelessness, unemployment or climate change – with 200 new enterprises starting up every year.
Other commitments in the action plan include:
£1.2 million for Just Enterprise, a business support programme providing workshops in finance, sales, market research and e-commerce
Bringing the international Buy Social certification scheme to Scotland, making it easier for consumers to know the social impact of buying certain products or services
Expanding the use of Community Share schemes – an innovative way for communities to raise capital for new local social enterprises
Providing social enterprise learning in every school through the Enterprising Schools programme, inspiring the next generation of social entrepreneurs