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Departmental Funding

Dáil Éireann Debate, Tuesday - 5 April 2022

Tuesday, 5 April 2022

Ceisteanna (976)

Mary Lou McDonald

Ceist:

976. Deputy Mary Lou McDonald asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development the supports that are available to a social enterprise (details supplied) in Dublin 7. [18220/22]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Rural)

Social enterprises are businesses that work primarily to improve the lives of people. Their core objective is to achieve a social, societal, or environmental impact. Like any other business, they pursue their objectives by trading in goods and services on an ongoing basis. However, surpluses generated are re-invested into achieving their core social objectives.

I am aware of the great work that Inner City Enterprise (ICE) does in supporting the development of social enterprises in Dublin’s inner city and providing employment opportunities. Their annual Dublin City Social Enterprise Awards, in partnership with Dublin City Council, is an inspirational event which demonstrates the vibrancy of the sector.

In relation to the specific question, I would advise ICE to seek guidance from their Local Development Company (LDC) and Local Enterprise office (LEO) as to the range of supports, including capital development funding, available.

My Department continues to provide capital supports to social enterprise through the annual €2.3m Dormant Accounts funded Social Enterprise Measure, and I plan to make further announcements on new capital supports in the near future in line with policy commitments. Information about all new schemes will be made available on my Department's website, and will be circulated widely amongst social enterprise stakeholders, networks and support organisations, including Inner City Enterprise.

In 2021, the measure supported 247 social enterprises through the €1m Social Enterprise Capital Grants Scheme, and the €680k Awareness Raising Initiative for Social Enterprise (ARISE) which supported 50 projects. I also provided €400k funding for a pilot Start-up Scheme for Social Enterprise which supported 25 early stage social enterprises, and €160k funding to the Covid-19 Social Enterprise Regeneration Programme, which is providing training and mentoring in strategic planning and income diversification.

My Department also provides significant supports to social enterprise through a number of other programmes including the Community Services Programme (CSP), Social Inclusion Community Activation Programme (SICAP) and LEADER.

Apart from funding, my Department also supports the development of social enterprises in other important ways such as providing training and mentoring, increasing awareness of social enterprise, cross Government and international engagement, supporting higher level research and providing guidance into issues such as legal forms for social enterprise.

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