School for Social Entrepreneurs turns its attention to community businesses


Yet more evidence that new trends and directions are emerging in the social enterprise sector.

The School for Social Entrepreneurs in the Midlands (SSE Midlands) has just announced that its new Community Business Trade Up Programme & Grant is open for applications.

SSE Midlands is looking for people leading organisations that put their local area at the very heart of what they do: the restaurants, community centres, bakeries, farms, sports clubs and pubs (to mention just a few) that are run by and for local people.

The programme supports the leaders of early-stage community businesses with:

  • A fully funded six-month learning programme (consisting of 12 learning days), and
  • A grant of up to £10,000.


The learning programme runs from January to July 2018. Its focus is to grow community businesses’ impact by increasing their sales and trading income. Participants will receive expert support and learn with other community business leaders in cohorts of 10.

It’s a great opportunity for community-focused organisations in the Midlands looking to grow. 

The deadline for applications is Wednesday 11th October 2017. Interested parties are encouraged to complete an Expression of Interest by the end of August so that  they can be advised whether they should progress to submission of a full application.

Who should apply to Community Business Trade Up?

Organisations that are run by and for a local community, for a social purpose. You should be trading or planning to trade and your profits should be reinvested for the benefit of that community.

Eligible organisations must be at an early stage and planning to grow. By this SSE Midlands means that you have already started and have plans to grow your sales and trading income by at least £10,000 in the next year.

Find out more, read the guidance, download application pack, complete an Expression of Interest.


Birmingham UK. Freelance research, evaluation and policy consultant specialising in social enterprise and the third sector. I maintain the BSSEC blog and website

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