Social Enterprise and Community Regeneration

Social Enterprise and Community Regeneration

Our latest research into the potential impact of social enterprise aims to better understand how social enterprise can contribute to the regeneration of communities, particularly low income or rural communities. We identified the example of Scotland, a country with many low income and rural communities, which has invested in social enterprise for over a decade and now has more than 5000 social enterprises, employing more than 112,000 people, and contributing £1.68 billion to their economy.  We also noted the exciting New Zealand examples of effective social enterprises such as Kilmarnock which now employs around 100 people and explored how we could best support social enterprise led community regeneration in Taranaki.

Our response was to create and establish Catalyst For Good Ltd (CFG).  CFG has been established as a charitable company with the primary aim of promoting the regeneration of communities and relieving poverty through the establishment of social enterprises that generate social, environmental and economic outcomes.

CFG will support social enterprises that are established within communities with the specific purpose of proving community development, employment and connection outcomes through a trading approach. CFG can offer start-up support including seed funding and support, expert advice on establishing social enterprises and access to the benefits of Social Enterprise @ Manifold – the social enterprise incubator hub we established in partnership with the Manifold co-working space.

Our vision for CFG is that over time it becomes the enabler of a wide array of social enterprises embedded in communities that together achieve significant outcomes for the Taranaki region.  Our focus for 2018 include potential enterprise projects in Marfell, Merrilands and Waitara, and a possible region-wide enterprise focused on youth at risk.

We also continue to work alongside the Akina Foundation to better understand social enterprise nationally and globally and translate this to the regional Taranaki context.