The third year of Big Potential Breakthrough has come and gone and with each year we learn more about the attitude of voluntary, community and social enterprise organisations towards the programme and its effectiveness. This evaluation looks at the third year of the programme and considers how well the fund is performing.
One takeaway that is becoming increasingly clear is that Big Potential has really been about more than just ‘investment readiness’. When the programme launched we tried to be as clear as possible that the aim of the programme was about helping organisations work out whether social investment could work for them.
For some organisations this meant becoming ‘investment ready. For others, it has helped them explore new trading ideas, understand the feasibility of expansion or develop existing enterprise activity.
Given that the programme closed to new applications in September 2017 the recommendations in this report should be seen as learnings for future programme managers and policymakers to consider.
We hope that the experience of Big Potential shared in this, and other evaluations, helps to shape the development of future programmes so that they can apply the lessons we’ve learned and be more effective as a result.