Q: What are the Social Enterprise Development Awards?
A: Santander’s Social Enterprise Development Award (SEDA) scheme was launched nationally in 2012 to support growth in the social enterprise sector. The £2.3 million award scheme can help established social enterprises to develop their businesses and support their communities.
Q: Which businesses are eligible for the scheme?
A: To be eligible, social enterprises must have been trading for at least two years, with an appetite to grow and extend their social benefit in one of three ways – promoting community inclusion; providing training and/or employment; or creating a greener environment.
Q: What are the award prizes?
A: There are three prizes, dependent on the turnover of the social enterprise. Those with a turnover of up to £150,000 can apply for the £15,000 award; those between £150,000 and £250,000 can apply for £30,000; and social enterprises with a turnover up to £1 million can apply for £50,000.
Q: How can social enterprises enter the scheme?
A: The scheme runs like a competition, with social businesses completing an entry form available on the SEDA website (www.santanderseda.co.uk) to demonstrate what they will do with the award, how it will grow their business and who it will be supporting and benefitting. We are working with community foundations in eight regions of the UK which administer the scheme for us. The entries are reviewed by the local community foundations, which shortlist candidates and organise a judging panel with representatives from Santander; the third sector; and local social enterprises who choose the winners.
Q: Why does Santander feel that supporting social enterprises is important?
A: Social enterprises play a crucial role in the communities in which they operate and contribute to local economic growth.
To date, we have 75 winners which, as well as the financial prize, benefit from the opportunity to access additional support. Santander works with Inspire2Enterprise, which provides a quarterly webinar on a variety of business topics and also a day of consultancy for winners. We can fund an intern to work with winners for three months, and we can tie in with our Santander Corporate & Commercial banking team to provide businesses with advice.
Q: What do previous SEDA winners have to say about the benefits?
A: We’ve had some excellent feedback from our winners, highlighting significant impacts to their businesses as a result of winning an award: “Winning SEDA is an important recognition of our efforts and the difference we’re making to carers of all ages in Blackpool. It has also been leverage when we were raising additional funds and negotiating with our partners, with some amazing results.”
Michelle Smith, Chief Officer, Blackpool Carers’ Centre
“SEDA helped us become more business-like, to grow our profile and focus on gaining more long-term commissioned work. The award gave us confidence in continuing with positive environmental community action within Toxteth in more strategic ways.”
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