Social Entrepreneurs Fund – Build It

Up to £25,000 of funding for individuals who have tried and tested an idea and want to turn it into their full-time job.

Who's it for?

Social entrepreneurs who have tested a social enterprise idea and want to make it their full-time career.

What do I get?

Up to £25,000 towards living costs

Where do I apply?

The next Build It deadline is noon on 7th July 2022

All applicants must be available for the Build It Panel Pitch on the 24th and 25th August 2022.

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What is the Funding for?

Build It is for social entrepreneurs who have tried and tested a social enterprise idea and want to turn it into their full-time job. Build It funding is awarded four times per year.

You can apply for up to £20,000 to fund a single salary.

We will consider funding up to a further £5,000 for additional essential costs, such as hiring other staff. However, the maximum amount is granted in rare instances when applicants can present a particularly strong case.

Who can apply? 

You can apply if your social enterprise idea is already off the ground and has been trading for two years or less. Typically, successful Build It applicants have been up and running for around one year and can demonstrate a strong track record of both income generation and measurable social impact.

You must also meet our eligibility criteria, which can be downloaded and read in full in the Application Guide. You can find this document in the Downloads section at the bottom of this page. 

How we assess your application 

Following the application deadline, we assess the applications against our criteria and the strongest applications are shortlisted. 

If you are shortlisted, you will be expected to attend a Practice Your Pitch and Cash Flow Challenge session in the lead up to a compulsory pitch to our panel.  All applicants will hear back as to whether they have been successful before the panel date, and any unsuccessful applicants will receive written feedback.  

Funding priorities:

Anyone can benefit from Build It funding and we assess each application on its merits. Applications that can show how the funding will allow them to increase the tangible social impact of the enterprise and create real benefits for individual, communities and/or the environment during the period of the funding award are more likely to succeed.

Check out our case studies for examples of enterprises that we have supported.  

Have a question? 

Read the Guidance Notes for Build It below or check out our Frequently Asked Questions. If you can’t find the answer you are looking for, get in touch via our Contact Us page, by phone or use our LiveChat feature.

Next Deadline:

The next build it deadline will be Thursday 7th July with compulsory panel pitch on 24th and 25th August

Upcoming Deadlines:

Thursday 15th September with a compulsory panel pitch on the 9th and 10th November

You can view our Guidance Document Online, as well as download a Word copy below.


  • Guidance Notes - Build it. Word Document.

    This document guides you through each section of the application form and provides information about the supporting documents required to apply for Build It funding.

  • Cashflow template - Build It

    Use this template to outline your cash flow projections as part of your Build It application. Please note that other templates will not be accepted.

  • Build-It Word Drafting Document

    You can use this Word document to prepare and draft your answers before completing the online application form. If you have any accessibility requirements, you may also submit this form as your main application.


Success stories