Fingal County Council & Social Innovation Fund Ireland Announce New Social Enterprise Development Fund

20180126 SED Fund Website Image carousel

A €1.6m fund to support social enterprises in Ireland has been established by Social Innovation Ireland (SIFI), in partnership with Fingal County Council and all 31 Local Authorities across Ireland. The Fund is financed by the Department of Rural and Community Development, from the Dormant Accounts Fund and IPB Insurance.

The Social Enterprise Development Fund is the largest of its kind to be invested in Ireland’s social enterprise sector and will be delivered over the course of two years. Up to eight successful applicants per year will each receive a grant of €50,000.

The successful applicants will also receive a place on the Social Innovation Fund Ireland’s six-month Accelerator programme. Additional places will be reserved for the most promising social enterprises across all 31 Local Authorities in Ireland.  The programme is designed to help social enterprises develop their business skills and to provide them with ongoing support and advice so that they develop sustainable enterprises. The fund is now open for applications from social enterprises in Fingal.

Welcoming the announcement, Chief Executive of Fingal County Council Paul Reid said: “This new fund will complement the already existing range of supports available from local authorities for social enterprises with a sustainable business model.  There is a great opportunity for social enterprises to achieve their goals and ultimately create a measurable social impact that has the potential to be replicated all over the country.”

Launching the Social Enterprise Development Fund, Minister of State for Community Development, Natural Resources and Digital Development, Seán Kyne, T.D said: “The Government is committed to supporting social enterprise in Ireland. Social enterprises create jobs while also encouraging and delivering positive changes in communities across the country. Every euro that is donated in private philanthropy is matched by the Department of Rural and Community Development through the Dormant Accounts Fund. With this approach, we are helping to scale social innovation. I’m delighted to launch the Social Enterprise Development Fund from Social Innovation Fund Ireland (SIFI) and thank IPB Insurance for their vision in supporting its establishment.”

CEO of Social Innovation Fund Ireland Deirdre Mortell said: “Over the past two years, Social Innovation Fund Ireland granted €2.475 million in supports to social innovations in education, homelessness, health and positive ageing. This is our sixth fund and builds on our past successes in supporting enterprises that are tackling social disadvantage and exclusion.  The Social Enterprise Development Fund will allow successful applicants to grow sustainable enterprises that are rooted in local communities and create solutions for a better Ireland.  We are delighted to partner with the local authorities and their mutual insurance company, IPB, in launching this fund.”

George Jones, Chairman of IPB Insurance said: “We are delighted to support SIFI and our local authority Members in working to develop a pipeline of social enterprises nationwide. There are fantastic social ventures across the country and it is important that they receive the necessary encouragement and supports in making a real and lasting social impact. The national reach and local knowledge provided by county and city councils and SIFI will greatly assist in the successful delivery of the Fund’s financial and professional supports and promote social entrepreneurship throughout the country.”

Welcoming the upcoming funding, Mayor of Fingal, Cllr Mary McCamley said: “Social enterprises typically provide services at a local level so this funding will also go toward the stimulation of job creation at a local level. This is not only significant for local economies but for the increased provision of valuable services such as childcare, care for the elderly, home help and recycling.”

John Evoy, founder of Men’s Sheds has been appointed the Manager of the Social Enterprise Development Fund by Social Innovation Fund Ireland. 

The fund will be open for applications from January 24th to March 28th, 2018 and the winners will be informed in June 2018.  Further details are available on Social Innovation