The Palaszczuk Government has released a plan to ensure the state’s social enterprise sector continues to grow and create more jobs for Queenslanders looking for meaningful employment.
Minister for Employment and Small Business Shannon Fentiman said the Queensland Social Enterprise Strategy (QSES) will help create a framework for growing the social enterprise sector while creating more jobs for disadvantaged Queenslanders.
“The social enterprise sector in Queensland currently supports 4000 jobs across the state and we want to help it grow,” Ms Fentiman said.
“Through this strategy we hope to more than double this number over the next ten years.
“We know many disadvantaged Queenslanders are looking for ways to enter the job market and participate in the economy.
“That’s why this year’s State Budget included $1 million in 2019-20 to support actions under the Queensland Social Enterprise Strategy.”
Member for Nudgee Leanne Linard said that social enterprises are making a huge difference in the lives of many Queenslanders.
“Espresso Train run by the Nundah Co-op is a fantastic local social enterprise success story providing meaningful employment to local people with a disability,” Ms Linard said.
“Social enterprises like Espresso Train are community assets and are vital to supporting many disadvantaged locals.
“The Social Enterprise Strategy will benefit many Queenslanders, particularly regional Queensland, as they tend be more “grass-roots” organisations focused on their communities and deliver local solutions to local problems.
Through the Strategy, $450,000 will be invested in a new Social Enterprise Grants program to provide valuable support during the start-up phase of a social enterprise. These grants will provide matched funding for social enterprises of up to $50,000.
Another $400,000 will go towards a pilot program which will provide access to training and mentoring to foster innovation and kick start business ideas.
The 2019-20 funding builds on $240,000 in funding previously announced for the state’s peak social enterprise body the Queensland Social Enterprise Council and will help to drive the sector forward.