Applications now open for Lloyds Bank Social Entrepreneurs Programme

If you’ve got a new idea or an existing project which benefits the community, Lloyds Bank Social Entrepreneurs Programme can help. The programme offers a fully funded year of training and a grant (£4,000 or £15,000) to help you develop your project.

The programme supports young organisations and individuals looking to get started on a new idea via the Start Up programme and supports established social enterprises looking to grow their impact via the Scale Up programme.

Designed and delivered by the School for Social Entrepreneurs (SSE) the programme runs for 14 days over a 12 month period. During the programme you will develop as a leader and obtain the skills needed to take your organisation to the next stage.  The programme is incredibly practical and students can expect to learn from their peers, build new networks and be challenged by practitioners.

Organisations previously supported across the Wigan borough include a cookery school addressing food poverty issues, a horticultural business supporting adults with learning difficulties and an organisation providing training and development in local deprived communities.Whatever your idea, SSE wants to hear it!

The programme will be delivered in locations across the North West of England (Start Up in Liverpool/ Wigan & Salford, Scale Up across the region) and there are 60 places available on the 2014 programme.

Applications are open until 3rd April 2014. For more information and details of how to apply visit: contact for more information.

Lloyds Banking Group Social Entrepreneurs Programme: News

Big Lottery Funding commits £6.9 million investment to power UK social entrepreneurs and improve communities

£6.9m invested to grow the Lloyds Banking Group Social Entrepreneurs Programme.

 Big Lottery Fund (BIG) today awarded almost £7m to further grow the successful Lloyds Banking Group Social Entrepreneurs Programme. This additional investment will enable the programme to deliver an impact of more than £14m* to the UK, increasing the numbers of social entrepreneurs funded through the programme to over 1,000, who aim to benefit over 120,000 people within their communities.


Total investment now increased to £14m

Building on the original £6m investment from Lloyds Banking Group with additional funding from social investor Nominet Trust, the new investment from BIG further increases the ambition of the programme to recruit and support participants who have the potential to create well over £20m in social value and generate over 4,000 jobs each year. The expanded programme will allow the social entrepreneurs to tackle societal issues across the UK from 14 different locations over the next five years.

Full Press Release: Click here


A Celebration of Social Entrepreneurship

The Wigan economy is set to receive a boost as 91 new and budding Social Entrepreneurs receive Associate Fellowship of the international School for Social Entrepreneurs.

These 91 individuals are just some of the Wigan residents who have worked with the School for Social Entrepreneurs North West as part of an innovative personal and development programme supported by Wigan Council which aims to nurture entrepreneurial ability and social entrepreneurship.

Sylvia Pearson, Development Manager at the School for Social Entrepreneurs North West said “This programme has not just been about starting a business although the region will now benefit from the work of new Social Enterprises that will be working to transform some of the most deprived communities across the borough; it has been about the individuals – the people. We have assisted over 118 people into jobs and training and have measurably improved the confidence and self belief of over 100 individuals, who we believe will go on to further assist in the building of sustainable communities across the borough.”

The School for Social Entrepreneurs North West exists to provide training and opportunities to enable people to use their creative and entrepreneurial abilities more fully for social benefit.

Employees from across Wigan Council also participated in a programme of personal and professional development, engaging with social entrepreneurs, social enterprises and business professionals from across the Northwest. Council employees now consider themselves as ‘social intrapreneurs’ and have gone on to integrate their learning into their work. As stated by one Wigan Council employee this has been “The best personal / business development programme I have ever been on. I have made links that I think will be long lasting and so beneficial.”

The support that has been delivered across Wigan is helping to address problems of worklessness and create a social enterprise legacy for Wigan. This legacy will continue with the delivery of the Lloyds Banking Group Social Entrepreneurs programme which will provide learning, development and an award of £4,000 to individuals who are looking to start a social enterprise.

For more information about The Lloyds Banking Group Social Entrepreneurs Programme, social entrepreneurs are urged to visit


SSE North West Fellows nominated for Mersey Woman of the Year 2012

Two SSE North West Fellows Barbara Phillips of Positive Impact and Jacquie Johnston-Lynch who set up The Brink have both been named as finalists in the Daily Post Mersey Woman of the Year Awards 2012.

If you would like to vote for either Barbara, who studied on the SSE Cultural Leadership Programme or Jacquie, who studied on the SSE Social Innovators in Health Programme (you can only vote once) please do so on the Daily Post website

These are two fantastic women who developed their social enterprises whilst studying with SSE North West and whose social enterprises are delivering some fantastic work across the region.

Voting remains open until midnight on 7th June 2012.


SSE North West Environmental Fellow named as National Trust ‘Inspirational Hero’

Matt Smith, Fresh Team UK was among the green heroes celebrated in the first National Trust Octavia Hill Awards.

Six winners were announced on 22nd May 2012 at a special awards ceremony in London.

The awards are named after the National Trust founder and social reformer Octavia Hill who died in 1912. They are being run in partnership with Countryfile Magazine.

Nominated by the public and then put to an online poll that saw nearly seven thousand votes, each winner is keeping the spirit of Octavia alive – standing up for precious natural spaces and places. 

Matt Smith from Bootle, Liverpool is the ‘Inspirational Hero’
Social Entrepreneur Matt is a Fellow of the School for Social Entrepreneurs North West Environmental programme having set up Fresh Team UK. Fresh Team UK works to increase worthwhile engagement with young people. They run environmental after school projects, where young people, schools and local volunteers, learn more about the environment, gain nationally recognised qualifications and work to improve community cohestion and building bridges with young people.

Matt is also tackling anti-social behaviour by getting young people into the outdoors. Not afraid to push himself he joined a month-long expedition down the Amazon aged just 15. Now six years on Matt uses his experiences in his work with children organising nature hikes, camping and self-sufficiency trips that educate, inspire and sometimes change lives.

The Awards attracted more than 160 entries and a final shortlist selected by a panel of judges with a wide knowledge of green and social issues. Sitting on the panel  alongside Fiona Reynolds, Director-General of the National Trust, were Fergus Collins, Editor of Countryfile Magazine, academic and broadcaster Professor Alice Roberts and journalist and writer Candida Lycett Green.

The public then voted, in their thousands, for the shortlisted entries.
Fiona Reynolds, Director-General of the National Trust, said: “These awards have shown that the Octavia Hill story resonates strongly today. As a nation we have a love for green spaces and see their value in providing refreshment for the mind, body and soul. And we’re still prepared to stand up for them.

“The winners and runners up show extraordinary achievement and real pride in their work. They fully deserve this recognition for their passion, endeavour and determination.”

Fergus Collins, editor of Countryfile Magazine, said, “There are many, many people out there who understand the value of the green outdoors for our mental and physical health, and they’re working, often against the odds, to protect them – usually in an unofficial capacity.

“Anyone who gives their hard-won time, energy and expertise to benefit the wider community and environment has my sincere thanks and the winners of these inaugural Octavia Hill Awards are particularly inspirational.”

Each of the winners will receive a specially commissioned bowl made by Tony Alderman who works at the National Trust’s Chartwell in Kent. The bowls have been made using English elm, oak and yew collected from woods near to Crockham in Kent where Octavia Hill lived.

They also win the opportunity to be mentored by a Trust expert and will be profiled in Countryfile Magazine.