Credit unions and charities will be allowed to run the Government's £680m Social Fund, a pot of money that provides loans and grants to benefit claimants, junior welfare minister Kitty Ussher (pictured) has said. The 500 credit unions in the UK were "the obvious choice" to run the fund, she said, but in areas where they did not operate, other charities such as Citizens Advice could be effective.
- An initiative to increase the number of social enterprises in Scotland is being launched by social enterprise support company Social Firms. The project, called Acquiring Business for Good, is designed to provide help and advice on how to buy profit-making businesses and turn them into social enterprises. For more information, visit www.socialfirms.org.uk.
- Social Care charity Turning Point has created a handbook to help small businesses tackle social need. Elements of Success provides advice on business practice and long-term sustainability. "There has been a lack of information aimed at small community-based organisations that are thinking about setting themselves up as social enterprises," said Richard Kramer, director of Turning Point.
- Futurebuilders England has invested £1.85m in the Chescombe Trust, which provides accommodation (pictured) and personal care for people with learning disabilities. The investment, its 300th since it was established in 2004, was an achievement described by Jonathan Lewis, chief executive of Futurebuilders, as "a true milestone".