“Be the change you seek”

23rd February 2022

Posted In: Be In The Frame

Social Entrepreneurs Ireland (SEI) is encouraging people across the country who have an innovative idea to solve a particular social problem to “be the change you seek” by applying for a place on its Ideas Academy – aimed at those with an early-stage idea to solve a social problem or Impact Programme – aimed at high-potential social entrepreneurs looking to grow the impact of their organisation.

SEI’s vision is an Ireland where people solve every social problem, and its mission is to find people with solutions to these problems and support them on every step of their journey. Since its foundation in 2004, SEI has supported more than 500 social entrepreneurs all around Ireland who have directly impacted the lives of millions of people and contributed significantly to creating employment opportunities.

Commenting on the national call for applications, CEO of Social Entrepreneurs Ireland, Tim Griffiths said: “Every day, in every community across Ireland, we see people stepping up with solutions to solve social problems, taking action and being the change they wish to see. We call these people social entrepreneurs, and at SEI, we’re looking to find and support even more of them”.

SEI’s Ideas Academy has up to 45 places available for people with innovative early-stage ideas to solve social problems. The three-month programme will be delivered online in 2022 and will provide participants with the support and direction they need as they take the first steps from idea to action, sparking a new generation of social entrepreneurs. Participants will be supported to clearly articulate, refine and progress their solution, to build skills and accelerate learning in core areas of importance to social entrepreneurs, and to move from idea to action. Participants also have the opportunity to pitch for a portion of a €40,000 seed fund at the end of the programme to pilot their idea. Alumni of the programme include Lib Multicultural Counselling Services, the Midlife Women Rock Project, Seed Scholars and Move2B.

Social Entrepreneurs Ireland’s prestigious Impact Programme, aimed at high-potential social entrepreneurs has up to five places and €100,000 in unrestricted funding available in 2022. Awardees will join a nine-month accelerator programme, where they will receive mentorship, training, and consultancy in areas such as leadership development, fundraising, governance, strategic planning, and communications. Awardees each receive €20,000 in direct funding, pro-bono support from partner organisations and access to a network of fellow social entrepreneurs and business experts. Alumni of the programme include FoodCloud, Grow Remote, The Shona Project and Mother Tongues.

DCC plc, the international sales, marketing and support services group, is the flagship supporter of Social Entrepreneurs Ireland’s national call for applications.

Social Entrepreneurs Ireland will host an informative Spark Session event for potential applicants on Monday, 7th March at 1pm. The event will outline the supports available through the two programmes. On the eve of International Women’s Day, attendees will hear from two SEI alumni – Madeleine Murray, co-founder of Change by Degrees and Sinead Ryan, founder of Little Fitness.

SEI staff and alumni will be on hand to answer questions about the application process over the course of 90 minutes. Registration for the Spark Session is available here.

Applications for the Ideas Academy and Impact Programme are open until midnight on Tuesday, 5th April. Interested candidates can apply or find out more at socialentrepreneurs.ie.