Social Innovation Fund Ireland Launched

27th January 2016

Posted In: FYI
Social Innovation Fund Ireland

Social Innovation Fund Ireland, a non-profit organisation catalysed by the Government in order to establish a fund of significant size and impact to aid the development of social innovation in Ireland, was officially launched today by An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny T.D. in Dublin.

The organisation aims to provide growth capital and support to the best social innovations in Ireland and in doing so to enable those groups to maximise their impact.

In December 2015, Social Innovation Fund Ireland opened the inaugural Animate Programme, Ireland’s first ‘non-profit accelerator’. The Animate Programme supports early stage innovations, projects and organisations to get to the next stage of their development. The award consists of a package of financial and non-financial supports that target growth.

A grant of up to €10,000 supplements the non-financial support includes: growth planning supports from a business consultant; a mentor; technical supports; and access to Social Innovation Fund Ireland’s networks. Since launching, the programme has received over 55 high quality applications.

To mark this unique and forward thinking initiative, the Taoiseach presented the first winners of the Animate Awards to:

– Carebright: a social enterprise developing a new model of care for people with dementia called Dementia Hub

– ReCreate: a national social enterprise that takes surplus stock from businesses and makes them available for free and in unlimited quantities for reuse as arts and educational materials for all kinds of creative purposes

– Save a Selfie: an interactive mobile app that allows members of the public to take “selfies” alongside emergency equipment, with the potential to save lives all around the country

– Thriftify: a web-based platform that helps charities realise the true value of unsold donated stock, particularly donated books.

Deirdre Mortell, Social Innovation Fund Ireland CEO, said: “The Government’s challenge fund of €5 million to Social Innovation Fund Ireland means that for every Euro of funds donated, we can match it with a Euro from Government, enabling us to double the impact of our donations. These four projects illustrate the power and impact of philanthropy when it partners with Government, creating 80 jobs while meeting local social needs.”

(Pictured L-R: the first Animate Awards winners Deirdre Mortell, CEO of Social Innovation Fund Ireland; Seán Peters, founder of Save a Selfie; Dara Connolly, CEO of ReCreate; Collette Ryan, General Manager and Majella Murphy, Business Developer Manager of Carebright; Rónán Ó Dálaigh, CEO of Thriftify; and Terence O’Rourke, Chair of the Board of Social Innovation Fund Ireland.)