Community Wealth Building is an approach that aims to strengthen local economies and reduce inequality in local communities, building wealth and prosperity for all.
It is a fundamental driver of a wellbeing economy, reorganising the local economy so that wealth is not extracted but remains in local communities. This means income and wealth is recirculated, communities are put first, and people are provided with opportunity, dignity and well-being to deliver social, economic and environmental benefits.
Community Wealth Building is based on 5 key pillars:
- Plural ownership of the economy
- Making financial power work for local places
- Fair Employment and just labour markets
- Progressive procurement of goods and services
- Socially productive use of land and property
Midlothian Council’s Economic Development Service are developing The Midlothian Strategy for Inclusive Growth 2023-28. This will be underpinned by Community Wealth Building, embedding the core principles of Community Wealth Building across all activities.
This will be further supported across Midlothian through the Community Planning Partnership’s Wellbeing Economy theme in the Single Midlothian Plan, aligning to Scotland's National Strategy for Economic Transformation (NSET) vision of:
“A wellbeing economy – thriving across economic, social and environmental dimensions with the ambition being Fairer, Wealthier, Greener”
The actions in the Single Midlothian Plan will build on existing Economic Development Service activity:
- Create a Community Wealth Building Action Plan in year one, with actions to take forward in the subsequent years. The plan will be developed in partnership with our Community Planning Partners to deliver better outcomes for businesses, communities and individuals in Midlothian.
- Deliver sessions in the community to raise awareness and understanding of Self Employment and Social Enterprise as career pathways, this will include follow up support from Business Gateway Midlothian and Midlothian Voluntary Action
- Creation of Enterprise Hubs in educational and community settings to reach and support students, pupils and those in our communities that aspire to be financially independent
Shared Prosperity Fund
The UK Shared Prosperity Fund (SPF) Local Business Support Grant funds are now open for applications.
SPF grant funding will support projects in the following areas:
Community Wealth Building
Projects supporting the local social economy, including community businesses, cooperatives and social enterprises as Midlothian transitions to a wellbeing economy. Funding will strengthen local entrepreneurial ecosystems, supporting businesses at all stages of their development to start, sustain, grow and innovate, including through local enterprise networks.
Supporting businesses to develop new and innovative products. Funding will provide financial support for early stage prototyping, modelling or beta testing, to accelerate the journey to commercialisation, with the potential to create higher value jobs.
Tourism, Culture & Heritage
This fund aims to encourage and support enterprises to develop tourism projects that will improve Midlothian’s tourism offer, making it a more accessible and attractive for visitors.