SOCIAL Entrepreneurs Ireland (SEI) who recently launched their 2013 Awards programme, sponsored by DCC plc, are urging Kilkenny’s brightest and most ambitious entrepreneurs to log onto www.socialentrepreneurs.ie and apply for funding by Monday (February 18).
Applications have already exceeded 2012 levels when SEI received three applications from Kilkenny entrepreneurs with game changing ideas to solve the social problems facing Ireland. Hopes are that 2013 will see an increase in applications for funding from the county.
This year Social Entrepreneurs Ireland will provide €500,000 in funding to eight social entrepreneurs as well as a further €250,000 in professional consultation and support ensuring they are equipped to scale and grow their businesses in order to impact as many people as possible, as quickly as possible.
Three Social Entrepreneurs will be awarded the top level “Impact Award” and €130,000 in direct funding with over €70,000 worth of support over two years. A further five will receive the “Elevator Award” and €22,000 in direct funding with over €10,000 worth of support over one year.
The application phase is the start of an intensive eight-month consultation and engagement process to boost and encourage positive change in Ireland. The selection process will include a “Bootcamp” in March where shortlisted candidates will pitch their ideas to change Ireland leading to interviews from which eight finalists will be chosen. The finalists will then embark on a three month finalist programme receiving partial funding upfront and ongoing professional consultation before the announcement of the 2013 Award Winners in October.
Over the last seven years SEI has supported 161 social entrepreneurs, investing €4.9 million in their projects, and provided significant additional supports. These in turn have directly impacted over 200,000 people across Ireland and created over 800 employment opportunities in the process.