Minority Women help Social Enterprise
The Government has launched an initiative to help more black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) women start their own social enterprises.
The Cabinet Office drive, launched alongside a new Government report entitled â??Social Enterprise: Making it work for Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic Women’, includes plans to signpost key sources of advice and funding for BAME women and to promote case studies of existing female BAME social entrepreneurs.
The report highlighted that the main barriers for BAME women starting social enterprises are a lack of knowledge of what funding is available and how to secure it, a limited understanding of business development, and cultural stereotyping. Deputy minister for women and equality Barbara Follett said;.
“Social enterprise can be a route to fulfilling employment, better incomes and greater independence, and has the power to transform our country for the better. Significantly for BAME women, it can enhance the role they play in their local communities.
“We want to develop practical measures to increase the representation of BAME women in their communities and we recognise the multiple benefits from encouraging more of them to enter social enterprise,” she added.
According to the Cabinet Office, there are currently around 55,000 social enterprises in the UK, which contribute £8.4 billion a year to the economy, but evidence suggests that BAME women are under–represented. Government’s Social Enterprise Coalition chief executive Jonathan Bland said;
“Encouraging enterprising women from BAME communities to connect with social enterprise should be an absolute priority, as it will benefit not only those communities, but the UK economy as a whole,”
“Social enterprise promotes economic growth and provides meaningful employment across the UK. It is empowering and effective among communities that have traditionally been excluded from mainstream business,” he added.