What are community enterprises and ventures?
Lots of people need some extra help, perhaps because they are older, disabled or have a long term health condition. The type of help that people need could include personal care, support with the home, to get out and about or work. Community enterprises are very small local ventures that offer people the help they need to live the life they want. All sorts of people run community enterprise and ventures including disabled and older people and family carers. The business models they use are on a continuum from fully commercial to fully voluntary. People who use the services and supports offered by community enterprises might pay with their own money or a Personal or Managed Budget through an Individual Service Fund, Notional Budget or Direct Payment.
Why are community enterprises and ventures important?
Strong communities and thriving community enterprise have a vitally important ‘prevention’ role – helping people stay connected and well. Government strategies for health and social care, including the Care Act 2014 and the NHS England’s Five Year Forward View, recognise the importance of unlocking community resource and ensuring the diversity and choice of local provision. With the right help, community enterprises and ventures can help public sector bodies to meet these duties and play a key part in creating the kind of vibrant and diverse local market that people and their families want.. Community enterprises create jobs and volunteering opportunities and help keep local money and resources local.
What do Community Catalysts offer?
Since our launch in 2010 Community Catalysts has worked in 49 areas, supporting the development of more than 1800 community enterprises. We use a proven model which scales through a single coordinator or Catalyst supporting up to 200 small, self-organising enterprises. We work with local partners such as local and health authorities and third sector infrastructure organisations. We support our partners to understand and create the necessary culture and systems change needed to enable community enterprises to flourish in their area.
Examples of our work in practice
Our project in Somerset to develop community-led solutions to homecare challenges
Our project in Worcestershire to increase choice for people who need care and support by developing a wide range of community enterprises
Our video of community enterprises in the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham and Worcestershire supported by Community Catalysts
Hear more about Community Catalysts and see 4 community enterprises in action:
Small Good Stuff
To extend our local work with community enterprises and ventures Community Catalysts has established Small Good Stuff www.smallgoodstuff.co.uk. Small Good Stuff is an accessible web directory which gives community enterprises a chance to show people what they can offer. It offers community enterprises access to peer support, information and resources. It also helps people who need care or support to link with local community enterprises who can offer what they need.