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Social Innovation 2023 Eligibility Criteria

The 2023 Social Innovation Challenge is focused on issues connected with the rising cost of living.

This edition will be looking to support new social enterprise ideas for removing the deep-rooted obstacles that prevent individuals and communities from living fulfilling and dignified lives, particularly in light of the current, well-publicised rising cost of living. 

Who can apply? 

  • Established social enterprises 
  • Unincorporated groups or community associations 
  • Individuals with an idea for a new project 

However, the Social Innovation Challenge grant can only be released to incorporated social enterprises operating in Scotland. What this means is that if an applicant who is not yet incorporated wins, we will support them with the incorporation process before we pay out the award. If you would like more information about this, please contact us to discuss it further. 

We also welcome and encourage applications from collaborations between different organisations. Our Programme Manager can talk you through how this process works before you apply. 

Eligibility criteria: 

If applying as a registered social enterprise: 

  • The enterprise is incorporated and registered with OSCR or Companies House.  
  • The enterprise is an asset-locked body with a registered office in Scotland. 

If applying as an individual or an unincorporated group: 

  • The lead applicant is 16 or over. 
  • The lead applicant is either a permanent resident of Scotland or has a visa / leave to remain that covers the period of the award. 
  • There is an intention to incorporate an asset-locked social enterprise with a registered office in Scotland (funding will be released on successful incorporation.) 

Applicable to all submissions: 

  • The funded project must seek to provide an innovative solution which addresses the rising cost of living. 
  • The activities of the enterprise do not involve political campaigning or the advancement of religion. 
  • The enterprise aims to provide direct social benefit to individuals, communities, and/or the environment. 
  • Profits from the enterprise are reinvested in the business and its social aims. No assets or uncapped dividends are transferred out of the organisation to private individuals or bodies. Please note that the applicant (or other individuals working for the enterprise) can take a fixed salary, but profits generated on top of this must be reinvested. 

Previous and current Firstport applicants and awardees can apply to the Social Innovation Challenge, as long as they have not already received a Social Innovation Challenge award. However, the project featured in their application must be new and innovative. Priority will be given to new applicants.