Monday, 16 December 2013 07:14

First rural social enterprise zone named

Written by  Ruralcity Media
First rural social enterprise zone named

CORNWALL has been designated Britain's first rural social enterprise zone.

The Cornwall Social Enterprise Zone was officially launched in a ceremony at the Eden Project by civil society minister Nick Hurd on Tuesday (10 December).

The designation marks the county's commitment to creating an entrepreneurial culture to drive growth, based on people and the environment.

Businesses and organisations across Cornwall also hope the designation will help attract investment and deliver sustainable prosperity.

Mr Hurd said: "At a time when we need new solutions, it is right to get behind our social entrepreneurs. Cornwall is rich in social enterprise and innovation.

So it is right that it should be home to the first rural social enterprise zone in the country.

"Where Cornwall leads, I hope other regions will follow as the social enterprise and investment movement grows in this country."

Cornish businesses and organisations supporting the idea include Cornwall College, the Eden Project, Fifteen Cornwall, the Real Ideas Organisation + the School for Social Entrepreneurs.

Jon Rolls from Cornwall College, who helped social enterprise leaders establish the zone, said: "Cornwall is not just a holiday destination, it's a place to do a different kind of business.

"We need to celebrate the fact we have some of the most innovative and entrepreneurial people and organisations in the UK, who want to make Cornwall a more sustainable place to live, work and play."

The Cornwall Social Enterprise Zone aims to help encourage greater inclusion and innovation across communities – developing entrepreneurial solutions to public sector challenges.

It is part of a national campaign to recognise Social Enterprise Places and is awarded by Social Enterprise UK (SEUK), the national body for social enterprise.

SEUK chief executive Peter Holbrook said Cornwall was one of the most dynamic places in the UK for social enterprise.

"It benefits from excellent leaders that are driving economic growth in harmony with local community benefit," he said.

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