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Social Enterprise Academy secures two-year partnership with the BGF Foundation

The Foundation has committed £200,000 to help empower more disadvantaged young people across the UK to realise their full potential.

16 May 2024

The BGF Foundation is proud to announce its newest partnership, with the Social Enterprise Academy, further solidifying its commitment to supporting young, disadvantaged people across the UK.

The Social Enterprise Academy has over two decades of experience supporting social entrepreneurs, social enterprises, and enterprising third sector organisations. A key strand of work is carried out with young people in schools, where the programme focuses on entrepreneurship education, building confidence among young people, and inspiring them to become active citizens, changemakers and job creators.

Through significant funding of £200,000 over two years, the BGF Foundation has committed to support the Social Enterprise Academy’s growth plans. This strategic collaboration marks a pivotal moment for the Social Enterprise Academy, as they embark on an ambitious journey to expand their innovative programmes and inspire the next generation of changemakers.

Unrestricted funding enables expert expansion

Over the past two years, the Social Enterprise Academy has established itself in schools in 14 Local Authorities — across London and the South, the North East of England, and North Wales.

Now, this strategic charitable funding from the BGF Foundation will provide the Social Enterprise Academy with the necessary resources to fuel further nationwide expansion efforts. Meanwhile, the unrestricted funding will empower it to use its own expertise, knowledge, and insights to make informed decisions on the most effective approach.

With ambitious goals to engage 300 schools and 6,000 young people over the next three years, the BGF Foundation funding will also enable the Social Enterprise Academy to advance its promising pilots (currently delivering in a number of schools across the North East of England and North Wales).

Impact beyond financial support

Significantly, the partnership facilitates more than just financial support. The Social Enterprise Academy will also benefit from access to BGF’s talent network, expertise on-demand, and pro bono support offered across various business functions within BGF — dependent on the needs of the charity, and where BGF can add the most value and make a tangible impact.

Commenting on the partnership, Neil McLean, CEO of Social Enterprise Academy, said: “The nature of our partnership with BGF plays a pivotal role in contributing to our aim of inspiring the next generation of young people to take collective action through social entrepreneurship to improve their communities. The BGF Foundation’s unrestricted funding will assist in allowing the Social Enterprise Academy to, effectively and innovatively, scale our impact in the North East of England and North Wales, while their pastoral support will be invaluable in contributing to sustaining that impact and growth — consequently bolstering our shared goal of supporting young social entrepreneurs to effect change within their communities.”

This holistic approach recognises the multifaceted challenges faced by non-profits and social entrepreneurs, and underscores BGF’s commitment to good growth across the industry.

Andy Gregory, Chair of the BGF Foundation and CEO of BGF, added: “During a critical scaling period, it’s imperative for organisations like the Social Enterprise Academy to receive not only financial support, but also strategic advice and opportunities for expert-led development. The BGF Foundation’s commitment to providing unrestricted funding and holistic support underscores our shared vision of fostering sustainable growth and empowering young people across the UK.”

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