South Tyrone Empowerment Programme
12 Beechvalley Way
Dungannon, Co Tyrone
Tel:028 8775 0211
The founding members of STEP recognised organisational sustainability as fundamental to its overall long-term aim. A degree of financial independence is required where action and advocacy for social change is a key component of the work, even where good working relationships exist with statutory agencies. Total dependence on external funding can also create strategic short sightedness and drift from core values. Within the original empowerment programme (1997-2001) STEP assisted in the development of the Rural Community Transport; the Volunteer Centre; the Women’s Centre; Equality 2000 (Disability Access) and a number of local neighbourhood community organisations, all now operating independently.
From 2001, the strategy centred on developing community enterprises that would also help financially support the core work. In 2007 STEP estabished a trading arm, STL (STEP Training & Learning) for the purpose of generating income through social enterprise.
STL manages a number of community enterprises which both meet community needs and create income to support STEP's core work. These initiatives include:
• Training and learning and consultancy provision
• Interpreting and translation services
• Workspace provision for micro-and community enterprise
• Shop located in Dungannon town centre