Social Enterprise

‘Social Enterprise’ has no legal meaning. In fact at least 60% of all Charities would also fall under the Social Enterprise category. Social Enterprise is a concept about how you will run your business - it is about being socially aware and often not-for-profit, whilst still running the organisation like a business.

'In the UK alone, there are 70,000 social enterprises, contributing £18.5 billion to the UK economy and employing almost a million people. This exciting movement is growing fast all around the world and we're seeing a boom in start-ups being launched that combine doing business with doing good.' Buy Social

You may be about to start up an organisation or you may have been running it for sometime but would like a bit more information about trading and income generation, whether you can be a paid director or not, or even whether or not your organisation is a 'social enterprise'.

If you need support for your social enterprise contact our Development Team:

We can:

  • Provide advice and information about the various legal forms

  • Provide income generation support

  • Provide support and training around strategic and business planning

  • Help you to get involved with our Social Enterprise Network. etc.

Community Catalysts and Community Southwark also have an exciting two year programme to develop local care provision by supporting small groups of people who provide care in Southwark. Small care and support enterprises are run by local people using their gifts and skills to provide support to people in their community. Find out more here.


Community Southwark Useful Resources

Community Southwark Resources - Income Generation: fact sheets and resources to help you generate income across the income spectrum

Community Southwark Resources - Starting Up: Various resources regarding starting up an organisation including fact sheets on different legal forms.

An Introduction to Social Enterprise: A brief overview of what a social enterprise is and how they fit in with the rest of the voluntary and community sector (VCS) in Southwark.

Crowdfunding for Community Groups: Crowdfunding is a form of microfinance where large numbers of people make small donations towards new projects or start up enterprises. this guide outlines what crowdfunding is and things to consider if using it to raise finance for your project.

Social Enterprise Resources and Support: A useful list of Social Enterprise support and resources and Crowdfunding sites. This will be updated regularly, so if you know of any more, please let us know.

Ethical Shopping Guide: A resource listing all sorts of social enterprises in and around Southwark where you can buy a whole range of goods.

Social Enterprise Network:

Community Southwark runs a Social Enterprise Network to support peer-to-peer learning, networking, collaboration and learning for social enterprises. Information from each session can be found on this page.

You can join the network by emailing or booking a place via eventbrite

Here are the Terms of Reference for network

Find useful information in the Social Enterprise Network Newsletter:

February 2015 Newsletter

March 2015 Newsletter

April 2015 Newsletter

May 2015 Newsletter

June 2015 Newsletter

July 2015 Newsletter

August 2015 Newsletter

September 2015 Newsletter

October 2015 Newsletter

November 2015 Newsletter

December 2015 Newsletter

External Resources:

Business & IP Centre at the British Library: Advice, information, support, networking, training and events to help you start, run and grow your business

Business in the Community: Support, advice, networks and campaigning

COBRA at City Library: e-resources available for library members to access 24/7 from any device with internet access. To use our e-resources all you need is a membership card

Community Catalysts: a Community Interest Company that works through local partners to help enterprising people and community organisations to offer care and support to local people.

Community Shares: Advice and support about, and investment of,  community shares.

Companies House: Registrar for companies. Also offers guidance.

Co-operatives UK: The national trade body that campaigns for co-operation and works to promote, develop and unite co-operative enterprises.

Guardian Sustainable Business: Useful news and information relevant to social businesses , including the Social Enterprise Network Blog.

Locality: nationwide network for community-led organisations

Olmec: BME focussed support and bespoke training for social enterprise and social entrepreneurs.

Red Ochre: Works to support organisations delivering social change across the UK and worldwide.

School for Social Entrepreneurs: Accredited courses specifically for social enterprise and social entrepreneurs.

Small Good Stuff: an accessible web directory that is totally free of charge and gives the little guys a chance to show people the splendid things they can offer.

Social Enterprise UK: The national body for social enterprise, providing advice, support, trainig and events.

UK Crowdfunding Association: The national body for the promotion of crowdfunding

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