Activating Emergency Protocol: Have I Got Social Enterprise News For You

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A very early Friday morning edit- my wife gave birth to a baby girl, Alice, yesterday morning. All doing very well.

Therefore, a couple of bits of housekeeping – my colleague Sophie has kindly offered to try and keep HIGSENFY afloat while I’m off, so email with anything that you’d like included. (Unlike me Sophie has a proper job and can’t spend her whole time arseing around writing newsletters so be patient with her!).

Second – if you want to book onto an SSE workshop please do so in the normal manner and we’ll get everything confirmed as quickly as possible.

See you in a month or so…I’m off to change a nappy.


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With apologies: Have I Got Social Enterprise News For You

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This week’s edition is a rush job – it’s currently 10.30am on Friday and I’ve only just started writing it. I usually cobble it together it on a Thursday, but yesterday I had a day of annual leave. “Sounds great Dave, you live in London, one of the finest cities in the world, you must have had a wonderful day. What did you do?”. Well, I went to Ikea in Croydon, which was by no means wonderful although I did have quite a nice chocolate doughnut in the cafe.

So there you go. Probably the worst, most banal introduction I’ve ever written for this newsletter and that’s really saying something. Luckily there’s some good news this week, otherwise I strongly suspect I’d be sending this next week to an audience of none…

Have a great weekend.


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Fiddling while Rome burns: Have I Got Social Enterprise News For You

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I’m still here. My wife is now the size of a Mini but no sign of a baby yet so here’s another HIGSENFY for your delectation. It was a tough one to write this week; our CEO Ali is on holiday and things have descended into chaos. It’s a bit like Lord of the Flies. (Younger readers – there used to be these things called books and Lord of the Flies was one of those. Imagine Fortnite but you couldn’t actually take part in it, only observe it, and there were no pictures but only words. Weird huh? Older readers – Fortnite is a thing that young people do. I don’t really know what it is, I’m just dropping in the reference to try and appear to be more in tune with popular culture than I actually am.)

Where was I? Oh yeah – chaos. Without our esteemed leader here to guide us through the day none of us know what to do. Looking round the office I just see a sea of vacant faces and blank expressions (although that isn’t drastically different to normal). We’re moments away from the collapse of SSE.

Let’s hope we make it to the weekend…


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Full term: Have I Got Social Enterprise News For You

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Have I Got Social Enterprise News For You could go offline at any point in the next couple of weeks. My wife is expecting a baby in 19 days so we’re entering the danger zone. It’s coming at quite a good time; our two year old has just settled into a fairly consistent 7.30pm – 6.30am sleep routine so it will be exciting to go back to sleepless nights, never quite being sure what day it is and having a blood stream which is 95% caffeine. Good times.

This time round I’m taking a month off (because daytime tv isn’t going to watch itself) so if it all goes quiet on a Friday morning that’s probably the reason, rather than me having been fired (although that’s always a possibility – we’ve just received our new staff handbook and it makes for grim reading. Apparently we’re meant to be here to work).

If you’ve got news you’d like shared and I’m not about pop a tweet to @schsocent and our crack comms team can send it viral. Probably.

Have a great weekend…


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Four to the floor: Have I Got Social Enterprise News For You

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Good on you for being in the office the Friday before August bank holiday. Traditionally this week’s newsletter gets about 30% fewer people reading it than usual so I’m torn between putting in 30% effort than usual, because what’s the point, or putting in 30% more effort than usual to reward those of you who are actually taking the time to read it.

I’ll leave it to you to decide which I went for, but I should let you know before you make your mind up that I’m writing this while listening to All Day Rave on 6 Music and to be honest I’m paying more attention to that and wishing someone would reopen Turnmills.

Enjoy the long weekend…


Full steam ahead

This week’s news has a slight Brummie twang as it features a lot of news from the Midlands. (Londoners – this is your chance. Seize it. You now have an opportunity to email and complain that there isn’t enough London news in the newsletter.) Exciting times for our West Midlands school as they have announced a new partnership with West Midlands Trains, which will see them bring vacant rooms in station buildings back to use by creating spaces for social entrepreneurs to work from. We’ll keep you posted with how you can get involved.

All aboard

Keeping you busy

SSE Fellow Asha Patel is recruiting a Business Development Manager for her organisation Innovating Minds, based in Birmingham and delivering bespoke therapeutic interventions, training and consultation. The successful applicant will work closely with the Asha to develop partnership opportunities, lead creation and sales progression. The job pays £25k – £30k.

Apply here

Pure fire

Congrats to SSE Midlands Fellow Janet Gray of Feed My Creative, who has just won the Small Business Sunday awards set up by former Dragon, Theo Paphitis. (Former Dragon as in he used to be on Dragons’ Den. He didn’t used to be a literal dragon) Janet is also up for two Bex Live Awards, Female Entrepreneur of Colour and New Business of Colour.

Feed My Creative is a social enterprise which aims to bring out the creativity in young people and adults with an emphasis on sustainability.

Check out their website here

Jewel in the crown

Cartier are looking for innovative & impact-driven women-led businesses to enter the Women’s Initiative Awards, which has a top prize of $100,000 and fourteen second prizes of $30,000 along with a series of entrepreneurship workshops, knowledge sessions and networking events. You need to apply by August 31st.

Which you can do here 

The wise ones

Also looking for laydeez are Pioneers Post and Natwest as they open applications to the Women in Social Enterprise 100, recognising 100 of the most inspiring and influential women in social enterprise. Nominations can be made until 2nd October.

Nominate here

Film club

Back to the Midlands, where SSE Fellow Tessa Morton and her organisation Act For Autism have released their first film, Autism Voices. It’s the work of twelve autistic students and has received acclaim from the BBC and will shortly be shown at the Golden Door film festival in New York.

Celebrate good times come on

Sticking with a film theme SSE Fellow Victoria Ijeh is hosting a Celebration Gala for her organisation Iconic Steps on September 5th. Iconic Steps is a social enterprise supporting young people aged 16-25 who need that extra bit of help, to acquire much needed skills, experience and confidence to increase their opportunities in entering the media industry. It’s free to attend and all are welcome!

Book a spot here


SSE Fellow Kathryn Kimbley is running an Animal Assisted Therapy in Counselling course suitable for Counsellors, Psychotherapists, Psychologists, Social Workers, Occupational Therapists and other health professionals and students looking to add another string to their bow. The next course takes place in Telford over 22nd September, 20th October, and 24th November and is currently available at a discounted rate.

CV time

A super job opportunity with at social enterprise Franklins Scholars; CEO Jessica Barrett is stepping aside and is now recruiting for her replacement. The organisation runs year-long programmes that improve academic attainment for some of the most vulnerable young people. The role pays £40k – £55k and the deadline for applications is 26th September.

People are what make businesses prosper

Some chap called Wayne Huizenga said that. No idea who he is, I just googled ‘phrases with the word prosper in them’. Why? Because Social Investment Business have just launched Pioneer and Prosper, a two-year pilot programme that will support a small number of ambitious charities and social enterprises with a repayable grant and support to help them to increase their social impact, raise investment, grow their business and become more financially resilient.

Find out more here

Back to school

We’ve still got spaces on next week’s Handling Difficult Conversations course, at a discounted rate. It’s a seriously good course, with seriously impressive feedback from previous participants. Don’t miss this one.

Book your place

Peer to peer

Finally, SSE Fellow Nicky Forsythe has two free peer-counselling skill programmes workshops taking place in Islington in September and October. As well as developing skills in open talking; empathic listening and overcoming barriers and obstacles to real communication, participants have the opportunity to be part of a group where they can talk honestly and be accepted for who they really are.

You can find out more here

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