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£5M fund launched to support Scotland’s social enterprises transition to net zero

Zero Waste Scotland, in partnership with Social Investment Scotland, has launched a £5M fund to help social enterprises, charities, and community organisations make the transition to carbon net zero.

29 Nov 21

The Social Enterprise Net Zero Transition Fund will support social enterprises and the wider third sector in their journeys towards carbon neutrality through activities including waste reduction, energy consumption, transitioning to sustainable transport options, and the adoption of circular economy business models.

Managed by Social Investment Scotland, the fund will provide loans to successful applicants starting from £10,000. There may also be some small grants available of up to £20,000, as part of a blended loan and grant offer. These grants are available to organisations with a particular focus on circular economy projects that deliver new or additional re-use, repair, or leasing/sharing activity, resulting in positive carbon benefits.

Iain Gulland, CEO of Zero Waste Scotland, said: “To truly end our contribution to the climate crisis we need to tackle overconsumption and switch from a wasteful linear economy to a circular one. Many social enterprises and charities in Scotland are leading the way with imaginative and ground-breaking ways to help us reduce the destructive impact of waste on our planet and meet our net zero targets. But we know financial obstacles can restrict their progress, or sometimes even prevent them from launching at all. Therefore, we’re thrilled to be working with Social Investment Scotland to launch the Social Enterprise Net Zero Transition fund – a way for us to financially nurture, empower, and enable these organisations to thrive as part of a vibrant circular economy.”

Chris Jamieson, Head of Investments, SIS said: “Scotland’s transition to a net zero economy requires bold and innovative solutions from every sector of our economy, including our social enterprise and third sectors. These organisations have a key role to play in ensuring that this transition is fair and just, due to their ability to deliver social and environmental impact. However, their ambitions are often constrained by the limited resources at their disposal. The Social Enterprise Net Zero Transition Fund will provide finance to support these ambitions, helping Scotland’s third sector adopt earth-friendly practices while contributing products and services to address one of society’s biggest challenges.”

The Social Enterprise Net Zero Transition Fund is part of the Scottish Government’s £30M Third Sector Growth Fund, which was announced in March this year. It supports the ambitions of SIS, ZWS, and the Scottish Government, to make waste minimisation and reuse the first-choice option for the consumer.

Social enterprises looking to apply for funding should visit the dedicated Social Enterprise Net Zero Transition Fund webpage. SIS will also be holding two free workshops which will take place on 7th December 13:00 - 14:00 and 13th December 12:30 - 13:30. Registration links will be posted on the Fund page.

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Notes For Editors

Zero Waste Scotland

Zero Waste Scotland exists to lead Scotland to use products and resources responsibly, focusing on where we can have the greatest impact on climate change. 

Using evidence and insight, our goal is to inform policy, and motivate individuals and businesses to embrace the environmental, economic, and social benefits of a circular economy. 

We are a not-for-profit environmental organisation, funded by the Scottish Government and European Regional Development Fund.

More information on all Zero Waste Scotland’s programmes can be found at https://www.zerowastescotland.org.uk/. You can also keep up to date with the latest from Zero Waste Scotland via our social media channels - Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn

Social Investment Scotland (SIS)
Social Investment Scotland (SIS) was established in 2001 to provide a new finance model for Scotland’s charities and social enterprises. Since then it has invested more than £100 million. Loan finance via SIS is available from £10,000 to £1.6M and is aimed at community enterprises and social businesses that might find access to finance from mainstream providers difficult. SIS also helps to manage funds on behalf of third parties with any profits being re-invested into social business development in Scotland.

For more information about SIS, visit: www.socialinvestmentscotland.com 

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