Mayo social entrepreneurs invited to apply for funding and support

Social Entrepreneurs Ireland (SEI ) is making €50,000 seed funding available through its Ideas Academy - to individuals who have an innovative idea to solve a particular social problem and who are looking to take the first steps from idea to action. A further €100,000 will be awarded through its Impact Programme.

The funding is part of a suite of supports on offer to social entrepreneurs on its Ideas Academy and Impact Programme, which are both currently accepting applications.

Participants on the Ideas Academy will have the opportunity to pitch for a portion of the €50,000 seed fund to pilot their idea at the end of the programme. Awardees on the Impact Programme will receive €20,000 in direct funding each to grow their impact in addition to bespoke non-financial support.

SEI, which is dedicated to supporting social entrepreneurs in Ireland, is encouraging people from Mayo to 'see the challenge, be the change,' by applying to the Ideas Academy – aimed at those with an early-stage idea to solve a social problem, or the Impact Programme – aimed at high-potential social entrepreneurs looking to grow their impact.

The closing date for applications is Wednesday, April 7. Some of SEI’s Connacht based alumni include Prepare Me, Kinship Care Ireland and An Meithal Rothar.

Commenting, SEI Interim Director of Impact, Siobhán O’Keeffe said: "All across Ireland there are people with ideas to solve social problems – people with direct experience of a problem and the courage and insight to put forward a solution, and act on it. It is often in the depths of real challenge that innovation is inspired and we are seeing that now in the responses to Covid-19.

"We’re calling on people from all backgrounds who need support to realise their vision to apply to SEI. We know that the first step of the journey is often the hardest one to take.

"We hope that the supports we have available on both of our programmes, along with the availability of €50,000 in seed funding on the Ideas Academy and €20,000 in unrestricted funding for each of our Impact Programme Awardees, will further support our participants to pilot their idea and grow their impact."

Up to 60 places on the Ideas Academy are available for early-stage social entrepreneurs. The three-month programme will provide participants with the support and direction they need as they take the first steps from idea to action.

In addition to having the opportunity to pitch for seed funding, participants on the Ideas Academy will be supported to clearly articulate, refine and progress their solution, to build skills and accelerate learning in core areas of importance to social entrepreneurs, and to move from idea to action. In response to current public health restrictions, the 2021 programme will be delivered online.

Up to five places are available on Social Entrepreneurs Ireland’s prestigious Impact Programme, aimed at high-potential social entrepreneurs.

In addition to €20,000 in unrestricted funding to grow their impact, Awardees will receive mentorship, training, and consultancy in areas such as leadership development, fundraising, governance, strategic planning, and communications.

They will also have access to pro-bono support from partner organisations throughout the nine-month programme. The Impact Programme will be delivered primarily online in 2021-22, with in-person elements included when, and if, safe to do so.

DCC plc, the international sales, marketing and support services group, is the flagship supporter of SEI’s national call for applications.

Applications for the Ideas Academy and Impact Programme are open until midnight on Wednesday, April 7. Interested candidates can apply or find out more at www.socialentrepreneurs.ie

 

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