Funding for Social Enterprises

Social enterprises across Cork now have an exciting opportunity to apply for cash grants of between €10,000 and €50,000 from the Social Enterprise Development Fund, together with a place on the National Accelerator programme for social enterprises.

Worth €1.6 million over a two year period, the Social Enterprise Development Fund, was created by Social Innovation Fund Ireland (SIFI) in partnership with Local Authorities Ireland and funded by IPB Insurance and the Department of Rural and Community Development.  It aims to back social enterprises that have developed a project that will add to the social and economic fabric of their community by way of social impact.

In a change from the first call for applications, successful applicants in 2019 will receive cash grants ranging in value from €10,000 to €50,000 (with ten grants of €10 000 and two each of €20 000, €30,000 and €50 000 available to 16 social enterprises). 

Successful applicants also gain a place on Ireland’s only National Accelerator Programme specifically designed for social enterprises. This intensive and practical six month programme will equip social enterprises with the skills they need to scale up and deepen their social impact- coverings key functions such as on key functions such as Strategic Planning, Impact Measurement, Financial Management, Governance, Business Modelling, Pitching, Storytelling and more.
The Accelerator Programme also includes the financing of bespoke business and mentoring supports tailored to the needs of each organisation, such as market research, marketing plans and online impact strategies.

At the close of the Accelerator Programme, each participating social enterprise will have the opportunity to pitch for a share of a further €100,000 cash grant targeted at those which demonstrate greatest potential for future impact and growth.

Who Can Apply?

Applications are open to social enterprises which:

  • Have a clear social mission that addresses a critical social issue
  • Generate income from goods or services
  • Are already up and running
  • Reinvest any surplus into achieving their mission
  • Have a not-for-profit legal form
  • Are separate from government and state agencies
  • Have their  main impact in the Republic of Ireland

How to Apply to the Fund

This year the open-call comprises of two stages:

Stage 1

Applications are open until the 25th January,  via a short application form. Based on this initial form, Social Innovation Fund Ireland will identify a shortlist of applicants who will be invited to submit further information..

Stage 2

Shortlisted applicants will be invited to complete a more detailed application form on request. The submission deadline for the second stage of the application is 28th February 2019. 

For further information and application forms visit