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The Power of Social Enterprise Shines Through

Winners of €1.6M Social Enterprise Development Fund Announced


8 Awardees will receive cash grants of €50,000 and a place on Ireland’s most prestigious Accelerator Programme

July 27th 2018: Cork County Mayor, Cllr. Patrick Gerard Murphy, today announced this year’s winners of the €1.6 million Social Enterprise Development Fund at an event in Vertigo at Cork County Hall. The fund was set up to support social enterprises from across the country to achieve their goals and create measurable social impact that can be scaled all over Ireland. The €1.6 million fund, created by Social Innovation Fund Ireland in partnership with Local Authorities Ireland, is supported by IPB Insurance and the Department of Rural and Community Development from the Dormant Accounts Fund.


Chosen from over 100 applicants from almost every county in Ireland, 8 successful awardees, made up of a mixture of urban, town and rural social enterprises, will not only receive cash grants of €50,000 but will also land a place on Ireland’s most prestigious Accelerator Programme for social enterprises.


The Accelerator Programme is run in partnership with Local Authorities Ireland and provides intensive, expert and bespoke supports for social enterprises to hone their social impact, business skills and accelerate their growth. The 8 awardees are:








14 awardees, who come from across the local authorities of Ireland, will also receive a place on the Accelerator Programme.


Deirdre Mortell, Chief Executive Officer, Social Innovation Fund Ireland said: “We believe that we’ve found amazing organisations that are already creating real change and, with the support of this new fund, will grow and reach more and more people in need of their work. These awardees collectively demonstrate the powerful impact social enterprises can have on every community across Ireland.”


Tim Lucey, Chief Executive, Cork County Council said; “Social Enterprises play a crucial role toward enabling the creation of sustainable communities, which is the very essence of what we do. Today’s awardees are proof of this. We are delighted to partner with Social Innovation Fund Ireland in creating this invaluable fund and to host this inspiring event today.”

George Jones, Chairman of IPB Insurance said: “The quality and diversity of fund applications has been impressive, but today’s awardees really stand out as social enterprises that blend innovative thinking and social impact in a way that makes a difference to their local communities. At IPB Insurance, we know how important not only financial support can be but also business and leadership development is to any fledgling business and with the Social Enterprise Development Fund, today’s awardees will be able to continue their incredible work and support job creation within their local communities.”


For more information on the Social Enterprise Development Awardees, please visit: http://www.socialinnovation.ie/social-enterprise-development/


Please find below more info on the 8 cash grant awardees and the list of 14 additional awardees taking place on the Social Enterprise accelerator programme.

Organisation Social Issue Location Summary
My Mind Mental Health Dublin MyMind works to ensure that everyone has easy and quick access to affordable mental health services. With this investment, MyMind will open a new centre in Dublin 8 in early 2019,


GIY GROWBox Obesity / diet related illness Waterford GIY BROWBox addresses the challenge of diet-related illness. It makes growing healthy and delicious food easy. This investment will scale the distribution of the range of GROWBox products.


Ó Cualann Cohousing Alliance Housing Wicklow Ó Cualann Cohousing Alliance addresses affordability in the housing market. The investment will give them the capacity to commence work on over 300 affordable homes in fully integrated, cooperative, sustainable communities, in the next 12 months.


The Shona Project Mental Health Waterford The Shona Project addresses the lack of information, advice and access to role models available to teenage girls in Ireland and offers supports through workshops, events and an online community. The investment will be used to increase the capacity of the organisation and to research, develop & deliver a number of modules, which can be accessed both online and offline.


Sensational Kids Disabilities Kildare Sensational Kids provide nationwide subsidised early intervention services for children who have a special educational need. The investment will allow them to add to their existing Leinster services and open two additional Sensational Kids Centres in Munster & Connacht.


Meals4Health Ageing Galway Meals4Health provide fresh, nutritionally balanced ready meals for older people in Ireland. This investment will grow the social enterprise which will extend the availability of and access to their meals throughout Ireland.


Social Farming Ireland Social Inclusion Leitrim Social Farming Ireland provides nationwide farm outcome-based placements for a range of people including people with disabilities, those recovering from mental ill health. Social Farming Ireland is the link between the farms and the service providers whose clients attend placements on the farms. This investment will develop the business model to ensure that Social Farming Ireland is a sustainable national social enterprise which serves both the participants and the farmers to the highest standards.


Sailing Into Wellness Mental Health / Addiction Cork Sailing Into Wellness helps people to build their recovery and supports young people at risk, through a healthy and natural solution to looking after their physical and mental well-being. A place on the Accelerator would give their leadership team the tools to manage and expand an innovative national social enterprise. It would involve developing a strategic plan which would bring Sailing Into Wellness up to 2021.



The 14 awardees taking a place in the Accelerator Programme are:


Organisation Social Issue Location
The Cornmarket Project Addiction Wexford
Walkinstown Green Social Enterprises Employment Dublin
Dress for Success Gender Equality/Employment Dublin
TechIreland Gender Equality Dublin
Helium Arts Disabilities Westmeath
First Fortnight Mental Health Dublin
St. Gabriel’s Orthotics Services Disabilities Westmeath
Third Space Community Development Dublin
The Peace Link Social Inclusion Monaghan
ReCreate Environment Dublin
Foodshare Social market/ Food Poverty Kerry
Siel Bleu Ireland Ageing Dublin
Tipperary Energy Agency Environment/Sustainability Tipperary
Generation Accommodation Isolations/Housing Crisis Dublin