The Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) has announced the Rural Social Economy Investment Scheme.
The DAERA Rural Social Economy Investment Scheme is a pilot Scheme to emerging and established rural social enterprises in Northern Ireland to enable them to increase their capacity, potential profitability and sustainability whilst supporting those who live in rural areas.
The focus of this call is on rural social enterprise. It is expected that applications will come from organisations operating in and supporting rural areas/communities. In exceptional circumstances, consideration will be given to projects where population numbers fall into urban centres and where it can be demonstrated that most of the benefit from the project is directed to rural areas or communities.
- Grant amount: £25,000 and £50,000.
What is social enterprise?
- A social enterprise is a business with primarily social objectives whose surpluses are principally reinvested for that purpose in the business or in the community, rather than being driven by the need to maximise profit for shareholders and owners.
- Social enterprises are different from those charities and voluntary organisations who do not have financial independence through trading income i.e. the activity of buying and selling goods or services.
This scheme is targeted at social enterprises who meet the following criteria:
Trading for at least 1 year (evidenced by accounts);
Based in a rural area in Northern Ireland;
Able to demonstrate experience in trading income in at least one of the following –
Provision of products; delivery of unique services; provision of employment;
Provision of volunteering opportunities; provision of training opportunities.
- The applicant should ensure that the submission is fully completed in line with the guidance notes. Applications should be submitted by email, as a Microsoft Excel attachment before the stipulated closing date on the application form to them.
- Applications should be sent from the email address provided in Part 2 of the application form, unless an agent, consultant, office bearer or staff member is completing the application on the social enterprise’s behalf. If an agent, consultant, officer bearer or staff member is completing the application on the social enterprise’s behalf they must cc the applicant email address provided in Q5 into the email.
- It is strongly recommended that you are aware of the speed of your internet connection, your system configuration and the volume of general web traffic that may impact on the time required to upload your application. The Department cannot accept responsibility for transmission delays and for applications received after the deadline. Applications received by the Department after the deadline will not be processed.
For more information, visit http://ruralaction.co/social-economy/