FAQ

Social enterprises derive a substantial portion of their income from trade and reinvest the majority of their profit/surplus in the fulfilment of their mission. Non-profit organisations rely heavily on other sources of income such as government grants, philanthropic money and fundraising events and in comparison do not rely on trade for income. A non-profit organisation may have a branch that operates as a social enterprise.

Social enterprises are organisations and collective agencies. They are led by an economic, social, cultural or environmental mission consistent with a public or community benefit; trade to fulfil their mission; derive a substantial portion of their income from trade; and reinvest the majority of their profit/surplus in the fulfilment of their mission. Social entrepreneurs are the ‘individuals who pursue opportunities to create pattern-breaking change in inequitable systems, whether through social enterprises or other means’. Social innovation is focused on the processes of social transformation.

Foresters provides loans to social enterprises for asset building and business development or purchase of equipment.

To be eligible for a loan, the organisation must be a social enterprise trading to fulfil its mission to provide public or community benefit; require the loan for asset-building, business development or purchase of equipment; and demonstrate capacity to repay the loan.

Finding seed capital for a start-up social enterprise is often not an easy process, and the supply of this form of capital in Australia is still as yet underdeveloped. Listed below are several avenues that social enterprises can pursue:

Business Grants Australia
NAB Micro-enterprise Loans
NSW Office of Fair Trading
Parramatta City Council Seed Funding
RMIT SEED
School for Social Entrepreneurs (programs in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne)
Social Traders
Social Ventures Australia
TACSI
Westpac Foundations
Sustainability Victoria

Each state also has a Gambling Fund that fund for business projects. Contact your Local and State Governments for additional information on grants.

Please Note: The links provided on this page are for information purposes only. Foresters takes no responsibility to qualify or guarantee the quality of this information.