Enterprising people looking to make a positive impact in South Yorkshire are being given a chance to start their journeys from firm foundations with a free introductory workshop delivered by social enterprise experts.

Produced for Social Enterprise Exchange by Sheffield Live! and hosted at The Circle, Sheffield on April 17 and 18, the two-day workshop is aimed at anyone thinking of starting a business, going freelance, who wants to give something back to society, or just wants to find out more about social enterprise.

Social enterprises are businesses run for a social or environmental purpose. The sector is varied with social enterprises involved in things like culture, sport, arts, health, education and food.

Working throughout South Yorkshire and the Sheffield City Region, Social Enterprise Exchange promotes social entrepreneurship and provides support for start-up and established social enterprises through grants, mentoring and specialist advice.

Attendees will need to complete an online form via the Social Enterprise Exchange website and be registered onto the programme.

Using the experience of supporting over 1,000 social entrepreneurs and social enterprises over the last five years, the experts will take attendees through the basics, from first principles to marketing, finance and getting organised.

Social Enterprise Exchange is part-funded by European Regional Development Fund 2014-2020 and The National Lottery Community Fund.

Steve Buckley, project director at Social Enterprise Exchange, said: “This is an ideal opportunity for local people who are thinking about social enterprise and the potential to do good things in the region.

“The sector is growing, and is playing a vital role in the economy, but we need more social entrepreneurs with that spark, experience, knowledge or passion, or with thoughts about how they can run their current business or community group in a different way, to get involved. We have the expertise to help you at every step of your enterprise journey.”

The workshop offers an opportunity to find out more about starting up in social enterprise, with the opportunity to explore early stage ideas and to gain a practical understanding of social enterprise basics. Experienced social enterprise advisors and coaches will be joined by guest speakers to inspire and guide you.

The workshop is open to individuals and groups who are based in any one or more of the following local authority areas: Barnsley, Bassetlaw, Bolsover, Chesterfield, Derbyshire Dales, Doncaster, North East Derbyshire, Rotherham and Sheffield.

Day 1 – Monday 17 April, 9:30 am – 4:00 pm
– what do we mean by social enterprise?
– from first ideas to action planning
– market research and concept testing
– marketing and communications strategy

Day 2 – Tuesday 18 April, 9:30 am – 4:00 pm
– developing the social enterprise business model
– financial planning and forecasting
– access to start-up finance
– getting organised – management and legal structures

Free lunch and refreshments provided.