Community Business Trade Up

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Trade Up provides community businesses with the skills, support network and funding to increase income from trading, run in partnership with the School for Social Entrepreneurs.  

Learning programme

Up to £5,000 match trading grant

Peer mentor

Delivered in six locations across England

Read the guidance and apply below

What can you apply for?

Do you run a project or organisation that exists to improve your local community? Is it led by local people and less than four years’ old?

This free support programme will give you the head-space, support network and funding needed to start or diversify your income from trading. You’ll become a stronger, more sustainable community business as a result of this programme.

  • A free learning programme, to help you build your income, confidence, resilience and impact
  • Up to £5,000 Match Trading grant
  • A community business peer mentor
  • An opportunity to meet regularly with other people running organisations like yours, so you can help each other out.

The learning programme will take place in six locations:

  • Birmingham
  • Bristol
  • Liverpool
  • London
  • The Midlands
  • North West

We welcome applications from all community businesses. We’re particularly keen to support community business who meet any of these criteria:


  • Led by a board or team who are mostly from a racialised and minoritised community
  • Led by a board or team who are mostly young people (aged 16-35)
  • Located in and giving support to very deprived or disadvantaged local communities.

Deadline for applications is 1pm, 28 July 2022.

How to apply for support from this programme

We recommend you read the application guidance notes before starting your application.


Are you a community business?


Is your organisation less than four years old?


Then apply via the SSE website

Other useful resources

Still unsure if Trade Up is right for you? Sign up to one of SSE’s online information sessions, meet them and find out: