The Board and staff of UCIT would like to thank all those who have supported UCIT in our 10 years of operation since 2001. During this period our loan fund has assisted over 200 community organisations and social enterprises in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland through providing loan finance totalling in excess of £30 million. Currently, UCIT has in excess of £14.5 million in capital under management, which is supporting local job creation, community engagement and economic development in areas of ROI and almost every city, town and village in NI.
To celebrate, UCIT commissioned a prospectus containing a record of all the projects which the organisation has funded over the past 10 years. To download the prospectus please click here.
2001 - Start up funding is received from LEDU (Invest NI) and International Fund for Ireland (IFI). UCIT also take ownership of a £6.6m loan book from IFI, Department for Social Development and Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD).
2001 - UCIT is awarded Charitable status in the UK and ROI
2001 - First loan is made to Moygashel Community Development Association towards the establishment of the Linen Green Designer Outlet Village
2003 - Establishment of UCIT Training and Mentoring programme
2003 - £3m secured from DARD to set up a fund for lending into the rural sector
2004 - netWORKS Cross-Border Community Enterprise Programme begins providing business support to organisations from both sides of the border
2004 - UCIT help secure Belfast as the venue for the annual UK Community Development Finance Association conference
2005 – A ‘Fundraising, Research and Policy’ post is created within UCIT
2005 – UCIT Community Enterprise Networking event in the Ramada hotel, Belfast, attracts over 180 delegates
2006 – UCIT is awarded ISO 9001 accreditation
2007 - Accreditation from the Social Finance Foundation enables UCIT to access a fund, which will ultimately reach c€97million, for investment south of the border
2007 – First loan is made in the Republic of Ireland to Fort Dunree Museum
2008 – A budget is set aside for one-to-one mentoring sessions to assist loan holders address potential problems posed by the recession
2008 – Networks 2008 tradeshow attracts 900 delegates and incorporates 87 social economy exhibitors and 150 pre-arranged ‘Meet the Buyer’ appointments
2009 – UCIT partners with the Invest NI Social Entrepreneurship Programme
2009 – UCIT welcomes a US Investment delegation to promote a broader understanding of the local social economy and the potential for strategic investment
2009 – UCIT mounts an extensive campaign to lobby the NI Executive to increase the flow of investment into the social economy sector.
2010 – UCIT in conjunction with the School for Social Entrepreneurs and others organises a series of Masterclasses which aim to assist the private sector to understand more fully the capacity of the social economy in growing the economy
2010 – UCIT invest £250,000 into Big Issue Invest's Social Enterprise Investment Fund to ensure local social enterprises have access to a fund which will total £10 million