Social enterprises in Hull, East Yorkshire and Northern Lincolnshire are being encouraged to take advantage of a fully-funded accelerator programme before it closes to new applicants.
The Hull & East Yorkshire Growth Hub’s Humber Social Enterprise Accelerator (Humber SEA) supports not for profit organisations – that are engaged in commercial activity – to take a fresh look at their long-term plans with a view to supporting sustainability and growth.
Delivered on behalf of the Growth Hub by sector experts CERT CIC, the Humber SEA has supported over 20 social enterprises to develop and thrive since it was launched for the second time in September 2022.
With the end of the programme coming at the end of June, this is the final opportunity for organisations to enrol with the accelerator.
One organisation that has already benefitted from the programme is Grimsby-based Foresight (North East Lincolnshire) Limited, which operates across Northern Lincolnshire to meet the needs and requirements of disabled people, their families and their carers.
Foresight Chief Officer Paul Silvester said: “Foresight has ambitious plans to take on an asset from the local authority and raise significant social investment. We worked with the Humber SEA team to construct a business plan, prepare the application, and source finance. The team were an invaluable resource and helped us through a complex process.”
Hull-based P.A.U.L For Brain Recovery are another organisation that has access the support of the Humber SEA. The charity operates a free community service to individuals and families affected by acquired brain injury in Hull and surrounding area, and also raise awareness and understanding of brain injury.
Leigh North, Operations and Finance Manager at P.A.U.L for Brain Recovery, said: “It was a pleasure to work with Neil from Humber SEA. He was extremely knowledgeable and left us with an amazing piece of work that enables us to highlight the social value of our work. I would highly recommend the programme to anyone in the third sector that is looking to develop their organisation.”
The Humber SEA offers tailored support to existing social enterprises via 1-2-1 consultations and also via 1-2-1 many workshops and events. The programme can help organisations to be more financially robust, to access a wider range of funding, clients and opportunities, as well as supporting the development of new services and facilities.
The programme can also assist with such aspects as volunteer and trustee management, succession planning, as well as monitoring and demonstrating social value.
HEY LEP Growth Hub Manager, Jon Brunton, said: “The not-for-profit sector is often one that is overlooked by traditional business support and funding schemes. That’s why we’ve developed this bespoke support programme and delivered it in two rounds since 2019.
“Whilst we’ve supported many social enterprises to date, there’s still just enough time left for us to work with another half-dozen or so organisations.
“I would therefore strongly encourage any interested not for profit organisation to get in touch to see how the Humber SEA can help them whilst the service is still available.
“Due to conditions of funding, we will be closing to new applicants within the next couple of weeks and of course, there’s a chance we may be fully booked sooner than that.”
Inspiring Family Solutions CIC are another organisation supported by the Humber SEA.
Company Director Nicola Carter said: “Without help from the Humber Social Enterprise Accelerator, we wouldn’t have been able to put together our Impact Map.
“The programme helped us to create a method of demonstrating the impact created by our CIC. They then helped us to create a PowerPoint presentation to use with our stakeholders and our clients.
“This tool is a very powerful example of how Inspiring Family Solutions as a business serves our community well. Giving people in our industry, like the Local Authority and the NHS, the understanding of the value and quality we can provide.
“Although this was a difficult product for us to understand while creating. Neil was brilliant in being able to simplify the Impact Map. As he said, ‘Don’t worry, it will all come together!’.”
The Humber Social Enterprise Accelerator is fully-funded via the Growth Hub’s Business Growth Scheme, and is therefore free to access for eligible organisations.
The programme can support Community Interest Companies (CICs), Charitable Incorporated Organisations (CIOs), Charitable Trusts, and companies limited by guarantee with charitable status.
Registration is required before accessing the programme, however this process is quick and easy with support available from the Growth Hub team if required.