Social Enterprise at the University of Sunderland

Tag: business case

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The University of Sunderland successfully bid for £25,000 HEFCE funding in 2012 from UnLtd, the leading provider of support to social entrepreneurs in the UK. The University was selected as a ‘Star Partner’ under the Find, Fund and Support model.

The funding, aligned with support from staff at the University’s Enterprise Place, a hatchery facility for fledging student and graduate businesses, led to the development of some exciting social enterprises.

Enterprises like Media Savvy Training Solutions (CIC), who deliver media and arts courses to schools and organisations, including young offenders, single mothers and ethnic minority groups, that were initially awarded UnLtd Catalyst funding, followed by a ‘Build it Award’. This funding helped Media Savvy to gain new contracts with the Probation Service, Sure Start, FACO (Family and Community Learning), NERS (North England Refugee Service) and many more. Media Savvy has gone on to win a number of business Awards including the Lloyds TSB Enterprise Award for Best New Start Up in Yorkshire and the North East in 2012.

A number of other ventures have been launched with support from the Enterprise Place, including I.M.P.A.C.T Northeast (CIC) who deliver a range of services to; communities and families, commercial and public sector organisations to help local people rise above difficult circumstances by building confidence, capability, skills and behaviours.

The University is now a key partner in UnLtd’s SEE Change Programme which has enabled it to cluster with the other four NE Universities to stimulate the social enterprise economy across the North East.

The Enterprise Place Project project has received support from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) 2007-2013.

The Department for Communities and Local Government is the managing authority for the European Regional Development Fund Programme, which is one of the funds established by the European Commission to help local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support local businesses and create jobs.

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Contact: Vince Robson,