Our Town Square team are proud to announce our Eco Business Centre in Bicester has been selected as 1 of 6 Oxfordshire spaces to be a social enterprise hub as part of the European Regional Development Fund new eScalate programme from OxLEP Business and OSEP.
The appointed hubs will help community and socially motivated businesses including social entrepreneurs, enterprising charities and other businesses committed to making a positive social and environmental impact.
Speaking on the importance of the role which social enterprises have to play towards our economy, Helen Brind of OxLEP Business said :
“More and more businesses in this sector are creating jobs and contributing to the success of Oxfordshire as
a place to live and work. We need to make sure that they have access to the opportunities and gain the skills they require to succeed. We want to build their capacity and increase the opportunities available to them. All kinds of businesses and initiatives will benefit from our eScalate programme and the focused support these hubs will deliver for us.”
Alongside our space at The Eco Business Centre, 5 other prominent Oxfordshire spaces working in collaboration to roll out this new programme of support are
Multiple spaces are a vital part of the programme as Grant Hayward of OSEP CIC said “Our goal is to create a strong and vibrant community of socially minded enterprises. In addition to the 6 Hubs, the programme is also looking at other ways to reach as many parts of the county as possible and make an impact in all sectors.”
During February each of the hubs will be launching within their own areas. The events will be open to individuals , businesses and charities who are interested in discovering more about the programme.
Following this, March will see the launch of the events programme which cover a wide variety of subjects including social impact measurement, inclusive economy and how to pitch for funding. Alongside this every hub will have a peer support group, creating a safe space for like minded individuals to meet and share stories or ideas.
Lucy Wendon Our Community Manager of the Eco Business Centre said
“I am so excited about being part of the eScalate programme. We aim to develop a connected eco system of purposeful businesses and social entrepreneurs who want to create real social and environmental change that will exist beyond the three year programme”
For more information about the support available through the eScalate programme,
including workshops, visit: oxfordshirelep.com/escalate