The first National Social Enterprise Policy for Ireland was launched on 18th July 2019 by the Minister for Rural and Community Development, Michael Ring T.D.

Speaking at the event held in Speedpak, Minister Ring said: “For many years, social enterprises have provided a flexible and effective model which has delivered a positive response to social and societal issues. Social enterprises deliver a range of services across a wide spectrum of activities through their business model. They are innovative and entrepreneurial and frequently find new ways to address social, societal or environmental challenges in areas such as employment activation, affordable childcare, and the green economy. In doing so, social enterprises contribute significantly to the delivery of many Government policy objectives.”

“For a number of years, there have been calls for a Government policy to help social enterprise to reach its full potential. I am delighted, therefore, to be able to publish this National Social Enterprise Policy for Ireland which will enable social enterprise to grow in scale, support jobs, and make a positive impact on individuals and communities in both rural and urban areas.”

“This is the first Government Policy for Social Enterprise in the history of the State, so it is a defining moment for all who are working for a better Ireland through a social enterprise approach. The Policy and the commitments it contains will enable social enterprise to contribute even more fully to Ireland’s social and economic progress. Today marks the start of a new phase in the development of social enterprise in Ireland.”

The National Social Enterprise Policy for Ireland is focused on three key Objectives: (1) Building Awareness of Social Enterprise; (2) Growing and Strengthening Social Enterprise and (3) Achieving Better Policy Alignment. The Policy sets out a series of 26 commitments on the part of Government across these Objectives for the development of social enterprise over the period 2019-2022. These commitments will be delivered in partnership with social enterprise stakeholders.

Minister Ring added: “As our society faces new challenges over the coming years, I believe that social enterprises can continue to identify and deliver new and innovative ways to address those challenges and create a sustainable and inclusive future for everyone. Through this National Social Enterprise Policy for Ireland, the Government will support social enterprises to achieve those objectives.”

Click here to view and download the full National Social Enterprise Policy in PDF format [1.9MB]