A new State-backed, non-profit organisation is aiming to raise a fund of €10m over the next five years to invest in projects that benefit Irish society.
The Social Innovation Fund Ireland was officially launched by Taoiseach Enda Kenny during the week.
It aims to provide growth capital and support for "social innovations" to have a positive impact on critical social issues.
It is relying on public donations to help build up its funding. The Government will match every euro donated.
The organisation, which is billing itself as "Ireland's first 'non-profit accelerator", will award grants to companies or organisations which it believes can help make a positive social impact through its Animate Programme. A grant of up to €10,000 in cash will supplement the non-financial support on offer. The non-financial support includes services such as growth planning supports from a business consultant, and technical support.
Social Innovation Fund Ireland chief executive Deirdre Mortell said the fund is aiming to raise €5m in funding over the next number of years, which will then be matched by the Government. "We want to build a fund of €10m over the next three to five years," she said.
"However, we are a charity so it is donations that we are seeking and grants that we award."