Queensland Government grants to grow social enterprises
Established Queensland social enterprises can now start preparing applications for grants of up to $25,000, thanks to the Queensland Government’s Social Enterprise Jobs Fund.
Minister for Employment and Small Business Di Farmer said enterprises could use the grants to purchase new equipment, increase their productivity, and help create more jobs.
“The Queensland Government is committed to supporting our diverse social enterprise sector to grow in size and scale, which is why they’re part of our $14.2 billion COVID-19 Economic Recovery Plan,” Minister Farmer said.
“Social enterprises deliver a diverse range of products and services, along with a community benefit that is substantially funded through their commercial operations.
“The Social Enterprise Growth Grants seek to grow businesses that trade intentionally to tackle social problems, improve communities, provide employment or help the environment.
“The grants will help scale up, extend or adapt current operations in Queensland, through new equipment, training or business coaching programs, strategic planning support, marketing support or website upgrades.
“Applications will open on 23 September and stay open until 5:00pm on October 7, but the eligibility criteria and guidelines are available now so social enterprises can start preparing.
“I have seen firsthand the differences social enterprises can make. Places like Substation 33 in Kingston, which recycles and upcycles a range of equipment for new purposes while providing employment and training opportunities for local people, or Australian Spatial Analytics, which employs people who are on the autism spectrum to develop geographic information systems.
“These grants will help social enterprises grow, so they can continue to play a vital role in our communities and in our small business sector.”
The Queensland Government has been working closely with the Queensland Social Enterprise Council to ensure the support delivers the best outcomes for the sector and the wider economy.
Queensland Social Enterprise Council CEO Elise Parups said the Social Enterprise Growth Grants would be valuable to social enterprises looking to bounce back and scale their operations in response to COVID-19.
“We know that social enterprises provide social, cultural, economic and environmental returns well above a “business as usual” model. Queensland’s social enterprises deliver services and products to customers, create new jobs and return on average a 1:3 dollar return to the community they serve,” Ms Parups said.
This is the second social enterprise grant as part of the $8 million Social Enterprise Jobs Fund, after the Community Social Enterprise Development Grants closed on 15 July. Applications for those grants, aimed at non-profit social enterprises, are being assessed now and will be announced soon.
Guidelines are available at the Department of Employment, Small Business and Training website.
For more information on available support for social enterprises visit the Future Skills Fund portal.