Cities, towns, counties and regions throughout the UK are showing how social enterprises can help regenerate communities and grow local economies.

Social enterprises are businesses which trade for a social purpose, reinvesting or donating the majority of their profits to further their social mission – from coffee carts creating sustainable jobs for the homeless to staff owned social care providers they are offering a blueprint for what a different kind of economy can look like.

The Social Enterprise Places Programme, run by Social Enterprise UK and supported by NatWest, recognises hotspots of social enterprise activity and works with key stakeholder including local authorities, businesses, charities and regional support bodies to grow social enterprise communities. Since its inception in 2014 the Programme has continued to expand – there are now 25 Social Enterprise Places throughout the UK from Plymouth to Salford and Conwy to the Yorkshire Coast.

This week, NatWest is joining the Programme as its principle supporter and will be helping further expand and develop the Programme. This announcement was made at the Social Enterprise Summit in Salford, the North West’s only accredited Social Enterprise City, in the same week that the Yorkshire Coast was officially announced as a Social Enterprise Place.

Commenting on the announcement, Peter Holbrook, Chief Executive of Social Enterprise UK said:

“We are delighted to announce NatWest as the official partner of the Social Enterprise Places Programme and look forward to working with them to further develop this important initiative. Social enterprises throughout the country are showing us a different way of doing business – they are creating jobs where they are needed most and helping regenerate local communities. At a time where we’re seeing ever increasing divisions and inequalities, Social Enterprise Places are demonstrating what a fairer, more sustainable economy can look like.”

Mark Parsons, Head of Community Finance & Social Enterprise Business Banking NatWest said:

“NatWest is proud to officially support the Social Enterprise Places Programme. We have a long history of working with social enterprises and supporting the sector is an integral part of our strategy to make a positive difference to local communities. Our Community Finance team is dedicated to helping businesses with a social purpose and through the Places Programme we hope to further strengthen the social enterprise sector, helping them to bank safely and securely, and ensuring that local social enterprises can develop and thrive.”

For more information about the Social Enterprise Places Programme visit - https://www.socialenterprise.org.uk/Pages/Category/social-enterprise-places