Free business support for social enterprises to continue via the Just Enterprise programme

The Just Enterprise programme delivers tailored support and learning opportunities to social enterprises and enterprising charities in Scotland.

It was officially launched on Thursday 22 June, at a reception in Edinburgh attended by the Minister for Community Wealth and Public Finance, Tom Arthur MSP.

What is Just Enterprise?
Funded by the Scottish Government and delivered by a consortium of third-sector partners led by Community Enterprise in Scotland (CEIS), the Just Enterprise programme provides free tailored business support and resources to help enterprising third-sector organisations start, sustain, recover or grow.

Since its inception in 2011, the programme has supported nearly 8,000 organisations and over 11,000 individuals across Scotland, meaning it has a wealth of experience and expertise to draw upon.

In addition to one-to-one support for social enterprises at any stage and in any location in Scotland, Just Enterprise delivers a comprehensive programme of workshops. These cover everything from how to start your enterprise to governance, finance, marketing, leadership skills, measuring social impact and much more.

In recent years, these have been expanded to include workshops that cover funding and investment and strategic planning and a suite of e-learning options have been developed to increase the accessibility of the training available.

Most of Just Enterprise’s support and training are free for qualifying organisations.

At Firstport, we provide support at the start-up stage.

What’s new for Just Enterprise?
The new programme has been expanded to cover key areas of the Scottish Government’s social enterprise action plan, including Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, and Net Zero.

This programme iteration aims to be the most inclusive to date, with increased targeted support for those facing additional barriers due to disability, ethnicity, or socio-economic factors.

There will be a focus on producing digital and interactive content that is as accessible as possible.

Consortium partners will ensure that it continues to create and deliver workshops and support that keep abreast of the key issues and developments that affect our social enterprise ecosystem.

The 2023-27 Just Enterprise contract will be fulfilled by CEIS, (CEMVO Scotland), Community Enterprise, Firstport, Impact Hub Inverness, Inspiralba, Inspirent (formerly LESL), Social Enterprise Institute (SEI) UK, Social Enterprise Academy, Social Investment Scotland, Social Value Lab and The Circle Scotland CIC.

Roddy Stewart of CEIS, who leads the Just Enterprise programme said:

“The Just Enterprise partners are delighted to be working with the Scottish Government to deliver the next four years of the Business Support for Enterprising Third Sector Organisations contract.

As our sector rises to the challenge of a cost of living crisis and delivering services in an environmentally friendly way, we believe our unique partnership of support organisations can help strengthen and build the capacity and capability Scotland’s social enterprises.”

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