Launch of SuNSE Project – Support Network for Social Entrepreneurs in Lisburn Castlereagh

L-R Amanda Grehan, Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council; Charlie Fisher, DTNI; Adie Bird, Resurgam Trust; Margaret Craig, DTNI

Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council (LCCC) has launched an innovative new project to support social economy businesses. Over the next eight months, the Support Network for Social Entrepreneurs (SuNSE) will be delivering training, workshops and networking events to help those just starting their social enterprise journey, as well as existing businesses that require extra development support.

Topics will range from choosing the right legal structure and asset management to communication. Participants will also be offered one-to-one specialised mentoring to help bring a product or new service idea to market, and networking resources to help stay in touch with other social enterprises. Three Social Enterprise Networking Hubs will be located in Lisburn, Dundonald and Glenavy to host workshops, business clinics and networking events.

SuNSE is jointly funded by LCCC and the EU Interreg North West Europe programme. DTNI has been contracted to deliver the programme.

The Chair of LCCC’s Development Committee, Amanda Grehan, said she is a huge advocate of social enterprise. “I’m delighted to see that such quality support is going to be offered to the social economy sector. I urge anyone thinking of taking part to get in touch soon as demand for the programme will be high.”

Charlie Fisher, Programme Manager at DTNI, confirmed that there is a growing recognition that community enterprises can be the drivers in a new economic model. “Social entrepreneurs are beginning to be recognised as generators of real prosperity in their neighbourhoods. SuNSE is a fantastic opportunity for those who have the creative vision for a social enterprise but perhaps require a little more development.”  

If you run an existing social enterprise or if you’re thinking about setting one up and would like to take part in this programme, please email info@dtni.org.uk for an application form. For more information on the SuNSE EU network go to www.sunse.eu.