Social Enterprise Development Fund

The Social Enterprise Development Fund is a €3.2 million fund which is being delivered over four years; 2018 - 2022.

The Social Enterprise Development Fund 2021 is now closed for applications.

An additional commitment of €1.6m in 2020, added to an original commitment of €1.6m in 2018, brings the overall fund to an investment of €3.2m in total, the most significant private investment in social enterprises to date. 

The fund was created by Social Innovation Fund Ireland (SIFI), in partnership with Local Authorities Ireland, and is funded by IPB Insurance and the Department of Rural and Community Development. The Department of Rural and Community Development provides match funding for funds raised by Social Innovation Fund Ireland, via the Dormant Accounts Fund.

The objective of the fund is to find and back social enterprises that add to the social and economic fabric of their community by way of social impact. The fund will provide critical support to the most innovative and impactful social enterprises across Ireland, helping them to:

  • Increase their social impact
  • Increase their traded income
  • Create more jobs
  • Develop long-term, effective and sustainable solutions

Cash Grants

In 2021 the fund will support up to 16 social enterprises with cash grants of between €10,000 and €50,000 and a place on our accelerator programme.

Accelerator Programme

All successful applicants will win a place on Ireland’s only National Accelerator Programme specifically designed for social enterprises. The Accelerator Programme will equip social enterprises with the skills they need to scale up and deepen their social impact.

Genesis Programme

The Genesis Programme will provide support to social enterprises who do not receive a cash grant. The attendees for the programme will be selected across Ireland, ensuring that the Social Enterprise Development Fund offers support to a social enterprise in every local authority area. The Genesis Programme will be an intensive two-day workshop that will focus on building the skills and knowledge needed to develop a sustainable social enterprise and to be successful in future funding opportunities.

Further Investment

At the end of the Accelerator Programme, all successful social enterprises will have the opportunity to pitch for a share of an additional €100,000. This further investment will be awarded to the social enterprises that demonstrate the greatest potential for future impact and growth.

The Social Enterprise Development Fund 2021 is now closed for applications.

This service is provided by

Urban and Rural Community Development

Phone +353 61 556000
Limerick City and County Council, Merchant's Quay, Limerick V94 EH90