Introducing the Growth Hub network to the School for Social Entrepreneurs and Match Trading™ grants

The Northamptonshire Growth Hub is now helping social enterprises and mission-led organisations gain access to the fantastic support on offer from the School for Social Entrepreneurs.

What is the School for Social Entrepreneurs?

The School for Social Entrepreneurs (SSE) helps people start-up, scale and strengthen organisations that tackle social and environmental problems. Every year, SSE supports more than 1,000 social entrepreneurs and social-sector leaders through learning. It runs courses that equip them with the skills and networks needed to create lasting change.

SSE helps in other ways too, like connecting people with funding and mentoring, and has been equipping social entrepreneurs since 1997, when it was founded by Michael Young. Today, its network of schools are changing lives and transforming communities across the UK, Canada and India.

What are Match Trading™ grants?

Match Trading™ is grant-funding that pound-for-pound matches an increase in income from trading. By rewarding sales growth, Match Trading incentivises social organisations to develop their trading base, so they can build stronger futures.

Match Trading pilots are seeing social ventures typically increase their income from trading by more than 90% in one year. Match Trading was created by the School for Social Entrepreneurs from twenty years of experience of helping people to create sustainable change in their communities. This funding is only possible thanks to the support of pioneer partners, Lloyds Banking Group and Big Lottery Fund, and its development is overseen by a Task Force of twenty leading social-sector organisations.

What opportunities are there for social enterprises?

Lloyds Bank and Bank of Scotland Social Entrepreneurs Programme

  • 14 days of learning spread over a year, to help social entrepreneurs develop their organisations at any stage, from start-up to scale-up
  • Traditional grant at start-up level, Match Trading grant of up to £7,000 at Trade Up and scale-up levels
  • Delivered at locations across England and in Edinburgh
  • Applications open in February 2019. People interested in applying can register their interest by clicking here

Community Business Trade Up Programme

  • 12 days of learning spread over six months to help community businesses to develop their income from trading and grow
  • Match Trading grant of up to £10,000
  • Delivered at locations across England
  • Applications open in spring 2019. People interested in applying can register their interest by clicking here


  • 10 days of learning to help established social enterprises to scale, in the following sectors: employability and training; health and wellbeing; environment and conservation
  • Open to applicants from across the UK
  • Applications are open until Friday 23rd November. Apply here

Other courses

  • Other courses and regional support offers can be found here