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France: Urgenc’ESS, a fund to help associations and small structures in SSE

The State Secretariat for Social, Solidarity and Responsible Economy has mobilised an emergency fund of €30 million for SSE structures with less than 10 employees hit by the crisis. The France Active association movement is the actor chosen to deploy it throughout France through a one-stop shop, accessible at

On 22 January in Rennes, Olivia Grégoire, Secretary of State for Social and Solidarity Economy, depending on the Minister of Economy, Finance and Recovery, officially launched the UrgenceESS scheme in the presence of Pierre-René Lemas, President of France Active, elected officials and representatives of SSE associations and structures.

Endowed with 30 million euros, the UrgenceESS fund, voted within the framework of the fourth amending finance bill for 2020 last November, is now fully operational. It will propose:

  • a diagnosis of the economic situation in order to direct structures towards the aid and support measures to which they are already entitled or towards new financing solutions;
  • a grant of €5,000 or €8,000 depending on the size of the structure and its needs;
  • support via the local support system for certain eligible structures.

This aid should enable social and solidarity economy structures to continue their activity during the crisis, to finance the jobs of their employees and to alleviate cash-flow difficulties.

The objective: 5,000 structures supported before spring 2021. This rapid deployment will be carried out throughout the country, thanks to the territorial network of France Active and its forty territorial associations. Each association will use its knowledge of the field and local partners to support the structures beyond the financial aspect. Each beneficiary structure will be connected with actors able to promote their rebound in this period of crisis.

Olivia Grégoire, Secretary of State declared: “SSE structures are fully eligible for all the schemes set up by the Government since the beginning of the crisis. But we note that many of them are not aware of and do not ask for this aid: the challenge is to give them the means to activate it. Beyond information, if access to aid remains difficult, it is necessary to be able to complete the system: this is the objective of the UrgenceESS fund”..

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