Supporting Communities is delighted to be offering new services to organisations interested in setting up social enterprise businesses.  Due to the launch of the NIHE Social Housing Enterprise Strategy and the welcome news of ‘Investment’ grants to develop and sustain social enterprises, we find this is an ideal opportunity for organisations and entrepreneurs interested in developing social enterprises to help achieve their goals.

Understanding Social Enterprise

Supporting Communities have developed an OCN accredited Level 2 course, ‘Understanding Social Enterprise’ which was piloted in December 2015. Understanding Social Enterprise is an eight session / 4 day course developed to provide beneficiaries with an understanding of the purpose and function of social enterprise, recognise the challenges and opportunities for development and be aware of a range of social enterprises.

Seven people took part in the pilot course which was held in the Northern Zone Social Enterprise Hub in the Ecos Centre, Ballymena. Participants were given the opportunity to network with the hub manager, Lawrence Greer, who also gave a report to participants on the support services the Social Enterprise Hubs can provide to social enterprises and entrepreneurs.

Feedback from the pilot course was excellent and this has now been added to the Supporting Communities Training Prospectus with a Level 3 course also in development.

“The course was clear, concise and well presented”
“The explanation of the models and methods of financing was very useful”
“I thoroughly enjoyed all of the course and would be interested in completing a Level 3”

Stephen Marks, our Social Enterprise and Training Officer, has been working with Social Enterprises through Supporting Communities for over seven years; he holds an Adv. Diploma in Social Enterprise from the University of Ulster and is a Director of SACN who won the ‘Education, Training and Jobs Award’ at the Northern Ireland Social Enterprise Awards 2015. Contact Stephen for more information.