From Expert Impact:

Ireland’s social entrepreneurs can now access mentorship from some of the world’s most successful business founders, and it’s all for free.

Expert Impact, a mentoring service which matches the leaders of social enterprises with highly experienced and successful entrepreneurs, has opened in Ireland.

Amongst the 70 Experts available are Julian Metcalfe, founder of Pret-a-Manger, Carrie Longton, co-founder of Mumsnet, and Patrick Grant, who runs several fashion businesses whilst also starring in the BBC’s ‘The Great British Sewing Bee’.

The free mentoring service has been running in the UK since 2014 and has been described as ‘simply incredible’ and ‘invaluable’ by social entrepreneurs such as Josh Turner of Stand4Socksand Lynsey Pollard of Little Box of Books.

Clodagh O’Reilly, the former CEO of social enterprise ReCreate Ireland and principal at Social Enterprise Solutions Ireland, who has 20 years of finance and business experience, will be responsible for ensuring access to some of the world’s best business brains for Ireland’s social entrepreneurs.

“Social enterprise is experiencing phenomenal growth in Ireland and there is huge potential for it to grow further. However, there is much work to be done in creating a strong ecosystem of support and that’s where this amazing initiative can help,” said O’Reilly.

Social enterprises are businesses set up to tackle an environmental or social problem. Well known examples in Ireland include GIY (Grow It Yourself) which helps people grow food and learn about food sustainability, and Thriftify a platform creating a movement of positive purchasing by connecting charity shops with consumers who care.

Founders or CEOs of social enterprises and charities can apply to meet one of more than 70 business experts for free through Expert Impact, to seek advice on business or organisational challenges. More than 350 social enterprise and charity leaders have used the service to date.

Social entrepreneurs are matched to experts according to the particular business challenge they want to address. Typical subjects include business development, strategy, finance and marketing.

Karen Lynch was CEO of social enterprise Belu for a decade, a water company which donates all profits to Water Aid. Previously one of the mentors, she is now the CEO of Expert Impact.

“Incredible things often happen during the mentoring sessions; brilliant ideas are sparked, talented board members get acquired, contacts are shared and doors opened. And most importantly social enterprises grow their social impact as a result so we are delighted that we can expand the service to Ireland,” said Lynch.

Social entrepreneurs wishing to find out more about Expert Impact and apply to meet a mentor should email

Photo by Andrei Carina on Unsplash

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