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Social Enterprise Programme Opens

Published: Fri, 28 Apr 2017
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The ladies from social enterprise, Space, in Newry: Tara McAteer, Jacinta Linden, Marian Hampson, Noreen McConville alongside Jennifer Hawthorne, Housing Executive
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£500,000 Social Enterprise Programme opens
Our hugely successful Social Housing Enterprise programme opened for applications this week.
Grants totaling £500,000 are now available in the third round of the innovative programme aimed at developing economically vibrant and self-sustaining communities through the creation and development of social housing enterprises.
We are keen to hear from groups and individuals keen to set up new social enterprises and existing social enterprises which are keen to ‎expand.
Applications for large awards of up to £10,000, up to £20,000 and up to £50,000 are open until Friday, June 16, 2017 at 4.00pm.
Small awards for business start-up, education and training awards of up to £1000 are open year-round, until funds are depleted.
Since its launch in 2015, we have already invested nearly £1million - creating 37 new jobs and supporting a further 24 existing posts - in communities through its Social Housing Enterprise programme.
Dozens of local social enterprises across Northern Ireland have received investment awards for a range of initiatives including: a filmmaker in Derry, community cafés in north Belfast and Coleraine, mental health support services and furniture upcycling initiatives in Newry and Fermanagh.
The scheme forms an integral part of our new Social Housing Enterprise Strategy.
Gavin Patton, a filmmaker in Derry~Londonderry purchased equipment with his £1,000 grant
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Our Head of Communities Jennifer Hawthorne said:
“We hope that communities take advantage of this opportunity to apply to us for funding. In a few short years the awards have already brought about tangible changes within the successful communities and, with awards ranging from £1,000 up to £ 50,000 available, there are real opportunities for local people to create something which could bring about lasting benefits to their community.
“Even where an individual or community organisation has an idea which is new and innovative but not yet fully developed, we do encourage them to contact us. In addition to ourselves, there are a number of organisations with whom we are collaborating who could help bring that idea to reality.
For more information and application forms please visit the Social Housing Enterprise webpage:
The Social Investments Team is ready to provide advice and guidance on the Scheme, and is looking forward to hearing from you. Contact them on 03448 920 900 or email socialinvestments@nihe.gov.uk