Community businesses can access up to £10,000 and a free learning programme

  • Applications open for the Community Business Trade Up Programme on 17th September
  • Community businesses improving the local area can access free support and funding from the School for Social Entrepreneurs and Power to Change

 

The Community Business Trade Up Programme, run by the School for Social Entrepreneurs (SSE), in partnership with Power to Change, will open for applications from Tuesday, 17 September until Wednesday, 27 November 2019.

The programme supports the leaders of community businesses with:

  • A fully funded learning programme (12 learning days, spread over nine months)
  • A Match Trading™ grant of up to £10,000
  • A community of supportive peers

 

The learning programme will help the leaders of community businesses to develop the skills, strengths and networks they need to increase their impact, with a focus on increasing their sales and income from trading. It will run from April to December 2020, and there are places for 80 community business leaders across England who will learn in groups of 10. The programme is delivered by the School for Social Entrepreneurs at seven locations across England.

The Match Trading grant, created by SSE, is a new type of grant-funding that pound-for-pound matches an increase in income from trading. By rewarding sales growth, Match Trading incentivises social organisations to develop their trading base, so they can build stronger futures. The first cohort of the Community Business Trade Up Programme achieved a typical 92% increase in income from trading[1].

Alastair Wilson, CEO of School for Social Entrepreneurs, said: “We’re delighted to partner with Power to Change for a third year, so we can jointly support a further 80 community business in England to grow. Community businesses strengthen local economies and enrich the fabric of society. But running them can be challenging. We’ll help community business leaders develop the skills, strengths and networks they need to improve their sustainability and impact, with the support of Match Trading grants and a learning approach we’ve refined over 21 years.”

Jenny Sansom, Programmes Manager at Power to Change said: “This programme will give a really important step up for relatively new community businesses and help them to focus on their trading activities and long-term sustainability. The first cohort of this kind of funding enjoyed a 92% increase in trading, which is a huge impact. I’m delighted to be opening up this programme for a new group of community businesses.”

The Community Business Trade Up programme has already supported more than 200 community business leaders since 2017.

Community businesses from across England can find out more and apply now until 27 November 2019, at: https://www.the-sse.org/community-business.

Application guidelines for Community Business Trade Up are available here.

Power to Change and SSE will be hosting a free webinar about the programme on Friday, Oct 4 at 11am. To register or watch the recording, follow this link.

ENDS

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Notes to editors

About community businesses
A community business is run by and for a local community. Its profits are reinvested for the benefit of that community.

About the Community Business Trade Up Programme
The Community Business Trade Up Programme is a learning programme accompanied by a grant or Match Trading grant of up to £10,000 for community businesses that are planning to grow. The programme is run by the School for Social Entrepreneurs (SSE) in partnership with Power to Change. The programme includes 12 learning days, spread over nine months. The programme will support 80 community business leaders in total in this phase, and has already supported more than 200 community business leaders. Applications are open now and will close on 27th November 2019.
More info: https://www.the-sse.org/courses/community-business/

About Match Trading
Match Trading™ is grant-funding that pound-for-pound matches an increase in income from trading. By rewarding sales growth, Match Trading™ incentivises social organisations to develop their trading base, so they can build stronger futures. Match Trading™ was created by the School for Social Entrepreneurs (SSE) from 20 years of experience of helping people to create sustainable change in their communities. Match Trading™ is made possible with the support of pioneer partners, Lloyds Banking Group and The National Lottery Community Fund, and programme partner Power to Change, and its development is overseen by a Task Force of 20 leading social-sector organisations. It will be used by at least 700 social enterprises and community businesses over five years. Match Trading™ pilots have seen social enterprises and community businesses increase their income from trading by around 90% in one year, with the additional support of an SSE learning programme. www.matchtrading.com

[1] In the Match Trading group, there was a typical increase of 92% in income from trading, from £42,000 to £81,000 (comparing median income from trading by year).