“See past the problems to the solutions” is the call from Social Entrepreneurs Ireland (SEI) who today launched its national campaign for applications, supported by DCC plc. SEI is inviting budding Wicklow social entrepreneurs, and those across the country, with innovative ideas to solve social problems to apply. Notable SEI alumni include FoodCloud (Iseult Ward and Aoibheann O’Brien), First Fortnight Festival (David Keegan) and Wicklow-based AsIAm by Adam Harris.
Applications are now open for the Ideas Academy – aimed at those with early-stage ideas, and Impact Programme – aimed at those who are ready to grow and scale their existing projects.
Commenting, Darren Ryan, CEO of Social Entrepreneurs Ireland said “We believe that there are social entrepreneurs in every village and town in Ireland and we want to find them. We know that not everyone will recognize themselves as a social entrepreneur right away, so we want to let everyone know that you don’t need a perfectly polished idea or business plan to apply. We’re looking for people with courage, insight and ambition to put forward a solution to a social problem, and act on it. Social Entrepreneurs Ireland is here to support on every step of the journey.”
Up to 60 people with early-stage ideas will win a place on the Ideas Academy where they will receive training and mentoring as they take the first steps from idea to action. The four-month programme runs in three locations around Ireland – Dublin, Cork and Galway. SEI also announced today that due to incredible demand in previous years, it is launching a second Dublin Academy in 2020.
Up to eight places are available for Social Entrepreneurs Ireland’s prestigious Impact Programme aimed at high-potential social entrepreneurs. The 11-month accelerator programme includes €20,000 in direct funding and significant non-financial supports across areas such as strategy, governance, business modelling, fundraising, communications, and leadership.
Throughout the month of March, Social Entrepreneurs Ireland will visit several cities to host Connect & Learn events. The events will provide potential applicants the opportunity to learn more about SEI’s prorgammes and application process, and connect with fellow budding social entrepreneurs.
- Connect & Learn South: 10th March (12:30 – 2:30pm: Republic of Work, 12 South Mall St, Cork).
- Connect & Learn East: 12th March (5.30 – 8.00pm: Huckletree, The Academy, 42 Pearse St, Dublin 2).
- Connect & Learn West: 19th March (12:30 – 2:30pm: Galway Chamber, Commerce House, Merchants Rd, Galway).
- Connect & Learn North in partnership with Social Enterprise Northern Ireland: 24th March (12:30 – 2:30pm: Work West, 301 Glen Rd, Belfast).
DCC plc, the international sales, marketing and support services group, is the flagship supporter of Social Entrepreneurs Ireland’s national call for applications.
Commenting, Chief Executive of DCC plc Donal Murphy said: “Over the past 10 years of proudly working closely with Social Entrepreneurs Ireland, DCC plc has seen first-hand the incredible power of supporting people with ideas to change Ireland. Our staff participate in judging applications and mentoring participants so we can share our learnings from backing commercially focused entrepreneurship for more than 40 years. We’d encourage anyone with an idea to solve a social problem to apply.”
Applications for the Ideas Academy and Impact Programme are open until midnight on Tuesday, 7th April. Interested candidates can apply or find out more at www.socialentrepreneurs.ie.