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SEEM - Social Enterprise East Midlands

Partnership information



The aim of the SEEM DP was to test and promote new means of combating discrimination and inequality in the labour market. This was to be achieved by developing the infrastructure to support social enterprise, giving access to training, knowledge, increasing base capacity and demonstrating social enterprise as a business model.


Key priorities and actions were:
  • developing a common understanding of and piloting local solutions to the way in which the social economy could encourage labour market integration

  • identifying and testing models for effective labour market interventions

  • clarifying the rationale and objectives of the sector

  • providing clarity of purpose and function for the sector and encouraging sustainable routes to regeneration and employment rather than short term interventions

  • developing sectoral solutions for tackling social and economic exclusion

  • developing and testing appropriate mechanisms for delivering inclusion

  • informing mainstream policy and influencing the design and implementation of mainstream services and funding strategies

  • informing policy development and implementation through local authority planning and procurement policies, specifically informing Best Value

  • implementing neighbourhood renewal policies, employment strategies, regional economic strategy and implementation of SBS social inclusion and competitiveness agendas

  • developing cohesion within the sector

The growing emphasis on delivering responses to economic and social exclusion through social economy structures raised a number of challenges for the social enterprise sector and the infrastructure agencies supporting it. The DP was created as a response to the identified need of the sector within the East Midlands region to address these challenges, to promote the sustainable growth of the sector and to support its ability to empower individuals and communities to develop responses to the failures of markets and traditional public sector interventions. The DP covered the whole of the East Midlands. As such, the DP had membership from pan regional agencies and those working in specific geographical or thematic arenas.

Target beneficiary groups

The DP provided specific support to projects working with disabled people, women, people experiencing rural isolation and ethnic minorities. A number of other projects focused on particular disadvantaged geographies supporting individuals experiencing a range of different barriers. One social enterprise project targeted ex-offenders.

Main Outcomes

By the end of the financial year 2003-4, the infrastructure Partners in the DP had reached over 300 people interested in social enterprise and over 150 established and emerging social enterprises. All interventions were based on meeting the needs of the beneficiary in relation to social enterprise and many interventions were significant and long-term. Many partners found the experience of working together improved their ability to meet the needs of existing and emerging social enterprises and formal and informal working relationships were established.



Core partners

Amazon initatives Ltd, Ashfield District Council, Ashfield Partnership, Braunstone Motor Project Ltd, Business in the Community Nottingham, Business Link Lincolnshire and Rutland, Business Link Nottinghamshire, CEFET, Charities Aid Foundation, Coalfields Regeneration Trust, Cooperative College, Co-options Co-operative Ltd,Citib@se, Countryside Agency, Credit Union Network East Midlands, Credit Union Network East Midlands, Derby City Council, Development Trust Association - East Midlands, Development Trusts Association East Midlands, Dukeries Training Agency Ltd, East Midlands Chapter of Credit Unions, East Midlands Cooperative Council, East Midlands Development Agency, East Midlands Development Trusts, East Midlands Local Government Association, East Midlands Rural Community Councils, East Midlands Social Firms, Engage East Midlands, Food and Drink Forum, Groundwork Cresswell, Groundwork Lincolnshire, Halfway up the Hill Community Group, Highfield Community Employment Project, Hurt Trust, Industrial Common Ownership Finance Ltd (ICOF), Leicester & County CDA, Leicester Community Action Network, Leicester Housing Association, Lincoln Phoenix Project, Lincolnshire CDA, Local Investment Fund, Midlands Community Enterprise Partnership, Northamptonshire Co-Nortamptonshire Co-operative, Nottingham City Council, Nottinghamshire County Council, Nottinghamshire RCC-CAPP project, Nottinghamshire Rural Community Council, Peak District Rural Deprivation Forum, Product Development Consortium, SHARP Trading (Leicester Ltd), Shelter Housing Aid & Research Project, Small Business Service, Social Firms East Midlands (The New Project Ltd), Tuxford Mine of Information, Urban Challenge, Voice East Midlands

Transnational partnerships


All enquiries, Social Enterprise East Midlands (SEEM),

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