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Social Enterprise & Responsible Organisation Partnership

Terms of Reference


Background Social Enterprise is an ever growing section of the Business, Voluntary and Community Sector (VCS). 'In the UK alone, there are 70,000 social enterprises, contributing £18.5 billion to the UK economy and employing almost a million people. This exciting movement is growing fast all around the world and we're seeing a boom in start-ups being launched that combine doing business with doing good.' (Buy Social; December 2014)

‘Social enterprise’ has no legal meaning. In fact at least 60% of all Charities would also fall under the social enterprise category. Social enterprise is a concept defining how you manage your business - it is about being socially aware and generating income through trading goods and services. 

From socially aware individuals with an entrepreneurial spirit to large organisations trading as their main source of income, there is plenty of activity going on in Southend covering a range of expertise, experiences, and complimentary services – all with one thing in common, providing a public good or service to the community.

Initial business and SAVS engagement (Southend Association of Voluntary Services) has identified a need for peer support and learning and networking opportunities aimed more specifically at social enterprises and entrepreneurs.


To promote, support and foster social enterprise activities in Southend and link with surrounding boroughs, particularly in the voluntary and community sector.

The Partnership aims to strengthen, improve and promote and build the capacity of Social Enterprises and entrepreneurism and to provide an environment which enables the social enterprises and entrepreneurs to operate more effectively

The Partnership will:

  1. Be a beacon for social enterprise in Southend – providing inspiring examples and speakers;
  2. Bring together individuals and organisations to share information and best practice, and to discuss issues and formulate solutions;
  3. Bring increased awareness of the range of support available for social enterprises/entrepreneurs;
  4. Signpost appropriate support to established and emerging social enterprise services and promote supportive business networks ;
  5. Work to develop and enhance entrepreneurism in the borough;
  6. Seek to maximise opportunities to enhance sustainability, including funding, commissioning, trading and innovative income generation approaches;
  7. Be a collective voice, bringing issues faced by Social Enterprise to the attention of the Council and other statutory bodies;
  8. Provide a space to develop formal and informal collaborative arrangements i.e. mentoring arrangements, sharing premises, writing a joint funding bid/proposal
  9. Work with the Local Authority and other statutory and private sector partners to develop multiagency partnerships;
  10. Develop and respond to policy and strategy development on issues relating to social enterprise and entrepreneurism affecting voluntary and community organisations in the borough;
  11. Advocate for statutory policies and practices that support the entrepreneurial interests of the voluntary and community sector.
  12. To provide a platform to link local enterprises with local companies that would like to trade with them, thus encouraging sustainability and social responsibility across the business community


  • Membership is open to voluntary sector social enterprises/entrepreneurs in Southend and surrounding boroughs
  • Representatives of Borough of Southend and other partners are welcome to attend the meetings to provide support to the Partnership.


  • The Partnership will meet quarterly;
  • Places to be booked via Eventbrite.

Expectations of the Partnership

The Partnership aims to be run by social enterprise, for social enterprise. There are therefore some expectations on members to:

  • Attend as regularly as possible;
  • Keep in contact between meetings;
  • Suggest agenda items;
  • Shape the future of the Partnership.
  • Provide venues for meetings if possible

Support from SBC

  • SBC will provide the following support:
  • Administrative support to organise the meetings;
  • Organise agenda items and speakers;
  • Facilitate meetings;
  • Provide follow-up information after each meeting;
  • Provide a bi-annual newsletter for the Partnership;
  • Be available for 1:1 support as required.


  • Number of Members 
  • Number of events and participation at events
  • Number of case studies produced
  • Referrals/offer for Business Support
  • Referrals/offer for grants