What do you need to get your business idea off the ground? The UK has launched SoUK.LB project to help idea, early and growth stage entrepreneurs make social change with an impact. There is one week to go to apply for a grant to launch and drive the growth of your social enterprise.
SoUK.LB - Social Enterprise Hub is a pioneering project on social enterprise in Lebanon. As part of its long term investments in Lebanon’s economy to further job creation, this new initiative by the British embassy in Lebanon will support social enterprises with $15,000 to $40,000 grant per finalist. The project aims to strengthen and promote this unique and growing sector by supporting enterprises that seek to create transformational social or environmental change for the benefit of society.
The UK is committed to Lebanon’s stability and security and believes in its prosperity given Lebanon’s long tradition of trade, business and entrepreneurship. Today Lebanon faces regional, socio-economic challenges, and ever greater pressure on the economy. The UK has already seen the benefits that social entrepreneurship offers for local communities, and has become a world leader in this sector, an experience it is now offering to share with Lebanon. Through social entrepreneurship, Lebanon can benefit from this model for effective and sustainable solutions to some of these challenges.
We invite you to put forward your applications today. The selected applicants will be provided with training, mentorship and grants for finalists. Details on how to apply: www.souklb.co , Facebook/Twitter/Instagram: souklbco
Notes to editors
A Social Enterprise is an enterprise that seeks to create transformational social or environmental change for the benefit of society whilst aiming to be financially sustainable. Nearly one million people are now employed in the sector that aims to use the power of business and enterprise as a force for good, with over 70,000 businesses contributing more than £24 billion to the UK economy.
UK social enterprises are outperforming mainstream businesses in growth and innovation. They are leading the way on diversity with 41% being led by women. 25% of social enterprises are under 3 years old.
In April 2015, the UK launched the UK-Lebanon Tech Hub using British expertise in the knowledge economy to help Lebanese tech start ups expand rapidly and go international. In its first year of operations, the TechHub has grown 70 Lebanese Tech companies from a collective valuation of £21.3 million to £107 million. This has contributed to a total revenue growth of £10.3 million. Eight Lebanese companies have established themselves in London via the TechHub, with many more planned. In February 2017 we announced £2.5 million funding to the UK Lebanon Tech Hub in support of Lebanon’s knowledge economy.
This is one of many projects the UK supports to help create jobs in Lebanon:
The UK has been supporting Mercy Corps ‘INTAJ’ programme since October 2015, targeting economic opportunities in the Bekaa and North Lebanon. By March 2018 we will have invested £12.7 million in this programme to support vulnerable Lebanese communities and Syrian refugees by increasing employment, training people in the skills required to get jobs, building stronger businesses and working with communities to support the development of the solid waste management and recycling industry.
The GoL presented the proposal of a Subsidized Temporary Employment programme (STEP) at the London conference in February 2016. This project will be launched next month.