SEEK - STARTING SOCIAL ENTERPRISE
Real People Making Change Happen

Over the course of 2017 and 2018 we worked in partnership with The Platform, UnLtd, University of Chichester, and Croydon Council. .

Our applicants were invited to make a positive social and environmental impact through business, by taking part in a programme of intensive training and mentoring that allowed many to gain full-time employment whilst setting up their own businesses, or launching their own social enterprise within the Croydon area.

The programme has now finished but we are extremely proud of the two cohorts that we have supported during this time and wish them a bright and prosperous future.

The SEEK Project was established to support unemployed or economically inactive people to set up new social enterprise and to gain the skills to move towards and into other employment opportunities.

The initiative offered a 6-month intensive start-up programme, put together and delivered by ourselves and our partners, that included a variety of learning and support to help take the first steps to setting up a business that would be able to tackle social problems, strengthen communities or improve the environment.

HOW ARE WE FUNDED?

This project has received funding under the Building Better Opportunities Programme which is jointly funded by the Big Lottery Fund and the European Social Fund.

Participants who completed the programme were allocated a £500 start-up fund; workshops and training; a mentor matched to their needs; opportunities to shadow social enterprise CEOs’ and Managers’ and build the connections they needed to make their business a success.

OUR PARTNERS:

About Us

We are the accredited Enterprise Centre for Croydon, established since 1983. Having enabled more than 8,000 businesses to take their first steps into the world of enterprise, our services, facilities and community support have led to the endorsement of our skills in the form two successive national awards presented by the NEN: Enterprise Support Organisation of the Year 2016 and Enterprise Engagement Organisation 2017.

In addition, we achieved “Finalist” status in the Croydon Business Excellence Awards 2017 under the category of Best Charity or Social Enterprise.

 

OUR PARTNERS:

Councillor Mark Watson, Croydon Council’s cabinet member for economy and jobs, commented:

 

“This is a fantastic opportunity for Croydon residents who are not in work to not only gain skills to move into employment, but also to strengthen their local community through their social enterprise.

There are already over 100 social enterprises in Croydon, transforming the way business is done in the borough. I’m pleased the council is working with partners to deliver the SEEK programme to support social entrepreneurs who will make a prosperous and dynamic contribution to Croydon’s local economy.”