How can social enterprise help you and your neighbourhood?

Birmingham City Council leader Sir Albert Bore and shoppers at a Digbeth Social Enterprise market

Birmingham City Council leader Sir Albert Bore and shoppers at a Digbeth Social Enterprise market

The social enterprise sector is a growing movement of people involved in developing stronger local economies, creating jobs, creating local wealth and assets, improving the quality of life, and helping people work together for mutual benefit rather than private profit.

Social enterprises are businesses that trade for community benefit rather than personal profit.

Like conventional businesses, they offer goods and services, operate in many different trade sectors and can adopt many different business models. What makes them different is that instead of trading to maximise profits for owners and shareholders, social enterprises trade to achieve social objectives such as:

» Offering services that are currently unavailable or too expensive for the local community to use.

» Providing education, training and employment opportunities for people who are disadvantaged in the labour market.

» Improving the local environment.

» Providing social care or other welfare services that improve the quality of life of their users.

The only real limit is your imagination: how might social enterprise help in your neighbourhood?