Social Enterprise Growth Hub

So, what is a social enterprise?

The UK Government definition of social enterprise:

“Businesses 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.”

Any activity that benefits our community could evolve into a social enterprise. Perhaps you want to provide opportunities for people who are socially isolated, like arts and crafts or another type of club or group? Perhaps you run an environmental organisation? Perhaps you already run a business but it could become a social enterprise? Whats your big idea?

If you have a business or an idea that will benefit society then considering it as a social enterprise may be beneficial. Charities tend to rely on hand-outs in the form of grants and donations. As a social enterprise however, you can still apply for many grants and accept donations but you can also engage in all sorts of commercial activity which might make your idea more self sustaining.

Social enterprises are more sustainable in our modern society because they can generate revenue in various creative ways, and with cuts to front line services and ever reducing funding for charities we believe that they are the way forward in making improvements within our communities.

Setting up a social enterprise can be a nerve wracking and lonely business, so we are excited to have received funding from East Sussex County council to establish the East Sussex Social Enterprise Growth Hub.

The hub will be open every Tuesday 10-12 at the Eastbourne Volunteers Community Space, 7 The Labyrinth, 1 & 7 Mark Lane, BN21 4RJ and you will be able to drop in and out when you are able, although to maximise the benefits to you we recommend attending every week.

One session a month will be a group mentoring session with Jason Cornes and will be invaluable to you in understanding how you work and how you can work better.

One session a month will be an open networking session with other community organisations in Eastbourne, a great place to be inspired and make connections with others making a difference.

The remaining sessions will be talks and training offered by other organisations who can help you in what you are trying to achieve.

The cost of joining the Hub for three months is £75, which we believe offers exceptional value and will help you with your focus as well as fine tuning and growing your social enterprise.

Programme for the first three months:

12th June – Mentoring with Jason Cornes. Are you an Introvert, Ambivert or Extravert? How and why does this impact on your Social Enterprise. Discovering your strengths and how to use them to the full.

19th June – Training with Liz Crew from Tech Resort on Data Management.

26th June – Community Networking Meeting. 20 minute presentation from Stephen Hughes, 3VA, on grant funding.

3rd July – Training with Liz Crew from Tech Resort on Data Management.

10th July – Mentoring with Jason Cornes. Your personality. Why you think, feel and act the way that you do.

17th July – Training with Mina O’Brien – an overview of social media marketing.

24th July – Training with Stephen Hughes from 3VA on grant funding.

31st July – Community Networking Meeting.

7th August – Mentoring with Jason Cornes. Problem Solving. When you change the way you look at things the things you look at change.

14th August – Follow up session with Stephen Hughes from 3VA on funding and governance.

21st August – Presentation from Business East Sussex.

28th August – Community Networking Meeting

If you would like to sign up for a three month commitment then please email

We look forward to hearing from you!