Somerset Social Enterprise Network

What is a Social Enterprise?

Social enterprises are businesses that are changing the world for the better. Like traditional businesses, they aim to make a profit but it’s what they do with their profits that sets them apart – reinvesting or donating them to create positive social change.

Join the Somerset Social Enterprise Network

The Smart Communities team has created the Somerset Social Enterprise Network to help social enterprises across the county to flourish and for the sector to grow. With over 200 members from start-ups to established companies, for individuals and organisations who support social enterprise, SSEN is your network.

Famous examples include Big Issue, Divine Chocolate, and the Eden Project. In Somerset we have some excellent social enterprises making real differences in our communities, this includes Rusty Road 2 Recovery in Bridgwater, Minehead Eye, the Great Western Hotel in Taunton, the Red Brick Building in Glastonbury and The Hub Yeovil, and all our community-run shops and village halls.

SSEN Member benefits*

  • Regular networking and training events with expert speakers, experienced facilitators and peer to peer member support.
  • Regular newsletters and local bulletins keeping you up to date with funding, grants and advice available for social enterprises as well as another way of showcasing individual organisations – email us with your details to be in the spotlight!
  • Access to a Somerset only members Facebook Group, talk to others, share ideas and resources.
  • Promotion of social enterprise to policymakers and commissioners.
  • *Membership is currently free to Somerset-based organisations, because of generous support from funders.
  • *Membership is open to social enterprises and similar organisations of all sizes and at all stages of development.
  • You can email the team on or join below!
Click here to complete the Membership Form

Discover theSomerset Social Entrepreneurs Programme

An exciting range of fully-funded support, including workshops, events, networks, one-to-one consultancy, grants (money you don’t pay back) and an entrepreneurship support programme.

The programme runs from February to June 2022.

Find out more an apply here

SSEN members can access additional support on the programme:

  • Training workshops and events
  • 1-2-1 for members starting up a new enterprise, or growing their enterprise. Limited support available – book early to avoid disappointment!
  • Business planning support
  • Support to help with decarbonisation plans
  • Support to help develop new products

Not an SSEN Member? No problem! Join free here:

Join the Network

Led by: School for Social Entrepreneurs (SSE). In partnership with: Somerset Community Foundation, Somerset Social Enterprise Network (Smart Communities Ltd) and Spark Somerset. Funded bythe UKGovernmentthroughtheUK Community Renewal Fund.

Free networking & training events

Join our series of networking & training events for Social Enterprises.

All workshops and events are free to attend and for social organisations and aspiring entrepreneurs based in Somerset. Most events are online.

Events in March / April & May:

  • Win it! Successful Bid Writing
  • Share it! Networking
  • Prove it! Measuring Social Impact
  • Save it! Save money and reduce your carbon footprint
  • Explore it! Somerset Diverse Communities
  • Nail it! Social Media
Click to see all our events


Discover a wealth of quality, local, and socially conscious products – buying from these organisations means profits are reinvested into the community the Social Enterprise supports.

Click below to browse the directory – from outdoor adventures, wild camping, maker workshops and ethical, local goodies!

SSEN Member Shopping Directory

Joined the Network and am delighted with the friendly welcome, well organised events and good business advice.Two of us who met in a webinar have joined forces to plan a pilot music project in Yeovil (one sole trader, one CIC).”

New 2021 member

Follow the Somerset Social Enterprise Network on Social Media


Mendip District Council

Sedgemoor District Council

Somerset West & Taunton District Council

South Somerset District Council

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