National Social Enterprise Policy for
Ireland 2019-2022

What is it?

Social Enterprises are businesses whose core objective is to achieve a social, societal or environmental impact. Like other businesses, social enterprises trade in goods or services on an ongoing basis. However, any surpluses they generate are re-invested into achieving a social impact.

The first National Social Enterprise Policy for Ireland 2019-2022 is focused on three key Objectives:

  • Building Awareness of Social Enterprise
  • Growing and Strengthening Social Enterprise
  • Achieving Better Policy Alignment

What is included?

The Policy sets out a series of 26 commitments on the part of Government across these three Objectives for the development of social enterprise over the period 2019-2022. These commitments will be delivered in partnership with social enterprise stakeholders. The objective of the Policy is to support social enterprise to grow in scale and impact.

There have been calls for such a policy for many years, and the publication of this Policy fulfils a commitment in the Action Plan for Rural Development and Future Jobs Ireland . Its publication represents a key milestone for social enterprises in Ireland.

The National Social Enterprise Policy for Ireland is part of a suite of policy initiatives from the Department of Rural and Community Development to support those who work with communities and disadvantaged groups. Other initiatives include a new Strategy for the Community and Voluntary Sectors and a new National Volunteering Strategy, both of which will be published this year.

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