Swindon & Wiltshire Business News

Business incubator looks for entrepreneurs to tackle social challenges

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A business incubator developed by local housing association Aster Group is looking for social entrepreneurs to help provide creative solutions to some of the biggest challenges faced by its communities.

Launched last year to develop businesses with a social purpose such as those tackling homelessness, mental health, financial exclusion and unemployment – inc. – was the first scheme of its kind to be created by a housing association in the UK.

Now Devizes-based Aster is looking for the next group of entrepreneurs to be part of inc. and its 2021/22 programme.

Social enterprise programme, inc., is being delivered by the Aster Foundation, a part of the housing association that invests in projects that improve lives and removes barriers to opportunity in local communities.

Last year, businesses from all over the UK applied to be part of the ten-month business development programme designed to develop their business and connect them with potential partners and investors.

Dan Willis, founder of Well Good and part of the 2020/21 cohort is full of praise for the incubator.

“We feel incredibly privileged to be a part of the inc. story," said Dan.

"We love the fact that they truly believe in helping sustainable businesses 'for good' become successful. The support network and programme content cannot be faulted.

"I would strongly recommend any social enterprise to consider this programme to accelerate their growth."

Using state-of-the-art Artificial Intelligence technology, Well Good aims to provide tailored predictive mental health care designed to help organisations support employee wellbeing.

Cam Kinsella, director of the Aster Foundation, said: “We launched inc. to find the people dedicated to developing innovative and sustainable ways to drive change across our communities, and to give them the support and mentoring they need to make that change. It’s been so rewarding to see our first businesses develop and grow.

"Now we’re looking for innovative and inspiring entrepreneurs to join us and be part of the inc. success story.”

Social entrepreneur can register their interest at www.aster.co.uk/foundation/inc

Applications are open until July 23.