Enterprise Grants Taskforce

Social enterprise
Grant-making practices
Influencing policy or practice
Joint research
Peer learning
Existing collaboration

Aims and activities

Aims and questions

Aims and activities

What is enterprise grant-making?

Enterprise grant-making is defined as “an approach which encourages and supports charities and social enterprises to increase or maintain their income from enterprise activities, including selling services or goods. This is largely through using funding conditions and/or incentives to encourage enterprise behaviour, often accompanied by capacity building.”

This form of funding enables social organisations to find new and different ways to generate sustainable levels of traded income.

What is the purpose of the Enterprise Grants Taskforce?

The taskforce launched in August 2022 has been gathering momentum. The group welcomes new members with an interest in enterprise grant-making at this pivotal moment of adoption in the sector.

The Enterprise Grants Taskforce recognises that most social impact organisations will be sustainable somewhere between 100% grant dependency and full commercial viability. Where on that spectrum each business operates depends on their size, location and the impact they are intending to create in their community. 

How the enterprise grant-making movement is shaped at this early phase is a critical success factor. To enable enterprise grant-making to become a mainstream funding avenue for enterprises, we need to collectively increase the adoption of the model by funders, both private and public.

Why are enterprise grants important for social enterprise?

Enterprise grants have been identified as critical in actively supporting enterprising behaviour for charities and social enterprises, especially those working in challenging areas of market failure. With increasingly limited resources to create positive social impact, this new movement of grant-making intentionally fills a gap in the funding market that complements unrestricted funding, project-based grant funding and repayable social investment. 

The Enterprise Grants Taskforce sees this shift moving at pace in the coming months and believes now is the time for more funders to consider adapting their practices to become more enterprise-centric, supporting the long-term sustainability and impact of the sector. 

Over the coming months we will be producing content, events and opportunities to collaborate to build understanding and adoption of enterprise grant-making and bring it into the mainstream.

We welcome all that have an interest in this growing funding model to join us in its evolution at this critical stage.

Voluntary sector organisations are increasingly having to compete for donations. In this environment, enterprise can play an even more important role.

Anna De Pulford
Chair, Enterprise Grants Taskforce, and Director, Dulverton Trust

How to get involved

To find out about becoming a member of the taskforce, email Joanna Verney, Strategic Projects Manager at the School for Social Entrepreneurs.

You may wish to come along to a meeting to see what is involved before you commit to being a member. We are very happy for you to do so, and we welcome guests regularly to discuss different topics.

We love to hear thoughts and suggestions on how we can grow the enterprise grant-making movement. Do get in touch to collaborate and share ideas.

Who's involved

Who was involved

Who was involved

The Enterprise Grants Taskforce brings together funders looking to support the development of a new set of practices in grant-making that encourages the growth of traded and earned income across the sector. 

Access – The Foundation for Social Investment, Caritas Westminster, Association of Charitable Foundations, BBC Children in Need, City Bridge Foundation, Co-op Foundation, Cripplegate Foundation, Crowdfunder, DCMS, Dulverton Trust, London Funders, Mercers' Company, New Local, The National Lottery Community Fund, The National Lottery Heritage Fund, Power to Change, Rank Foundation, Social and Community Capital, School for Social Entrepreneurs, Social Enterprise UK, Social Investment Business, UnLtd, V4CE.

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