Thinking about starting a Social Enterprise?

Social Enterprise comes in all sizes, from small community cafes to big international organisations. Setting up a Social Enterprise or changing an organisation from a charity, public sector of private business into a successful social enterprise can be daunting, exhilarating and challenging experience.

Get an idea of some of the exciting organisations in the sector at Social Enterprise UK’s social enterprise pages here

Social Enterprise UK has produced a guide to starting your social enterprise

The guide takes you through the essentials from finding investment and funding to deciding on the most suitable legal structure for your social enterprise. Throughout the guide they’ve provided some words of wisdom from social entrepreneurs – what they wish they’d known when they were starting out.

You may also find it useful to visit here for the government’s guide to setting up a social enterprise

Why social enterprise? A guide for charities.

Charities can diversify their income streams by looking to social enterprise. This guide offers practical tips and advice on the issues to consider before trading. As charities face a tougher funding environment, this free guide aims to help those trying to diversify their income by becoming a social enterprise

The guide has been produced by Social Enterprise UK (SEUK) and Pilotlight, a charity that brokers free business coaching to small charities and social enterprises to help them grow and become more sustainable. It highlights that charities don’t always need to change their legal structure and emphasises that many social enterprises remain as registered charities. For some charities a social enterprise will be just one part of their activities that will enable them to make a surplus so that they can grow and invest

The guide explains where charities can trade without structural change and where they will need to set up trading companies. It acknowledges that some charities may find it hard to make the change from grant funding to running a business, selling services or products at a profit and advises them to have a robust business plan in place

Find out how social enterprises can help meet many of a local authority’s objectives, and get practical advice about how local authority teams can engage with social enterprises to benefit the communities they serve and in particular relating to social value.

For staff including commissioners, heads of procurement or economic development and regeneration managers SEUK website is full of useful information.  Click here