Charities would rather trade as a Social Enterprise
Social Enterprise UK have released a survey that shows 45% of registered charities identify themselves as social enterprises.
However, they are hindered as they have poor access to business management and financial help.
The results of the survey showed 92% said they would like to increase their income from trading and government contracts in the next three years.
From asking 100 charities, the results shows that more than half of the sectors income is now earned through trading and government contracts, rather than charity donations or grants; 90% said they are concerned that traditional voluntary and grant funding will become more difficult to secure in the coming years.
The majority of charities are extremely positive towards the idea of social enterprises, with only 19% having a more cautions response. However, most charities say their lack of business skills, poor access to finance which is highlighted in a recent study by CFG, lack of support for the transition from voluntary to trading organisation and scepticism from trustees.
Social Enterprise UK's chief executive, Peter Holbrook, said:
Charities are generally very positive about social enterprise and keen to trade to generate income. Social enterprise is gaining real traction and is better understood by the voluntary sector. It isn't at all unusual for charities to be very business-minded now.
The changing landscape is forcing charities to adapt. As public sector markets are opened up to competition, charities have to be business-savvy to bid for and win contracts, and able to prove their social impact.
This is a new way of operating for many. But the hard-won Public Services (Social Value) Act that came into force this year provides a critically important tool for charities when selling their services to commissioners.
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