Business start-up

Business Start Up

Business Support & Networking Programme

Fully Funded Business Support for your Social Enterprise from Cumbria Social Enterprise Partnership

Cumbria Social Enterprise Partnership (CSEP) is the representative organisation for Social Enterprise in Cumbria. Established in 2003 we help the development of new social enterprises and support the existing sector to grow.

Social enterprises are businesses that are changing the world for the better. Like traditional businesses they aim to make a profit, but it’s what they do with their profits that sets them apart – reinvesting or donating them to create positive social change. Social enterprises are in our communities and on our high streets – from coffee shops and cinemas, to pubs and leisure centres, banks and bus companies – providing local services for community benefit.

CSEP has two programmes which are live.

Countywide Support & Networking Programme:

This comprises up to 12 hours of fully funded professional business advice and guidance to help start-ups navigate their way from an idea through to incorporation and finds the right business model and form of company for your social enterprise.

Established social enterprises can benefit from 12 hours of support to cover subjects such as business planning, marketing, governance and succession, bidding for contracts and measuring social impact.

We also have an extended offer for social enterprises wishing to take on a community asset (such as a shop, pub or post office) which can be up to 18 hours of support and can provide advice on community ownership and share offers, accessing funding and finance or governance and management.

This programme is fully funded by Cumbria County Council.

The Spark – a part of the Transforming West Cumbria programme

This is similar to the Countywide programme, is free to access and is focused upon developing the social enterprise sector in West Cumbria (covering Allerdale and Copeland).

In addition to Start-up support and packages for Existing Social Enterprises, we also have a “pre-start” programme … helping to identify would-be social entrepreneurs, building their capacity to start their own social enterprises which can benefit their community.  See an issue? Got an idea?  Need help?  This programme can help turn an issue into an opportunity and an idea into an enterprise.

The Spark also has access to some additional capacity building funding though its Try It and Grow It elements.

The Spark is fully funded by the Cumbria Community Foundation’s Transforming West Cumbria programme, which is funded by Sellafield Ltd and its Social Impact Multiplied (SIx) fund.

Both programmes are delivered by a consortium of advisers, led by Cybermoor Services Ltd, a local social enterprise.

For further information on both programmes, and to have an initial discussion about your idea, your community or your social enterprise contact:

Becx Carter, Support & Networking Programmes Manager, Cybermoor Services Ltd,

Tel: 07786678283

Cumbria Social Enterprise Partnership is made up of organisations from all sectors: public, private and Voluntary, Community, Faith & Social Enterprises (VCFSE) and welcomes discussions about other partnering opportunities.   To discuss your ideas for future partnering contact:

Martin Allman, Social Enterprise Manager, Cumberland Council,

Tel: 07973 811179