Phew. There is some news: Have I Got Social Enterprise News For You

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On Wednesday afternoon I was staring down a barrel. I had precisely zero stories for this week’s newsletter. That’s never happened before. What is a newsletter without news? Just a letter I guess, and I haven’t written one of those since the 90s. But we’re not living in the 90s any more so I was able to put a shout out on Twitter for contributions. I could call it co-creation or crowdsourcing or something equally fancy like that, but that would suggest that it wasn’t just a desperate throw of the dice, which it was.

Luckily some great stuff came back – it’s a real box of curios.


Cambridge Judge Business School are hosting Social Venture Weekend over 24th and 25th November in, er…Cambridge. It’s aimed at anyone with an ambition to start or grow a social venture and it’s £75 for the two days. I’ve not been personally but have heard from others that it’s a really good weekend.

Keeping with the Oxbridge theme the Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship in Oxford have appointed two new directors: Ana Bakshi and Dr. Peter Drobac. They have a number of open job vacancies if you’d like to join them.

SSE East not only sent me news that there are only three weeks left to apply for their free Thurrock social entrepreneurs programme but they also sent me a fun fact: Wonderwoman was recently filmed in Thurrock. The social entrepreneurs programme runs for 18 days over 12 months and will give 16 start-up social entrepreneurs the opportunity to learn from established and successful, local social enterprises as well as business professionals including accountants, lawyers and marketeers. And maybe Wonderwoman. All the details here.

A couple of crowdfunding campaigns to lob some cash at if you fancy, both food based. In Leeds, Rob Moores of Growing Better is hoping to build a hydroponic vertical farm in a shipping container to grow micro greens which will be sold locally. Growing Better support and advocate for people facing mental health challenges by providing therapeutic, social and work opportunities in an urban farming social enterprise – you can back the campaign here and read an interview with Rob here.

Down in my neck of the woods (Peckham) Fat Macy’s are raising funds to renovate and create a cafe and restaurant, complete with a professional commercial kitchen for training and events. Fat Macy’s gives homeless Londoners living in temporary accommodation the opportunity to gain work experience & save for their own homes, and this new space will include coworking space and space to showcase the best social enterprises in London. Check it out and back them here. 

(While on crowdfunding, we’re running the last crowdfunding workshop of 2017 here in London on September 14th – book your space here).

‘Dave, we’ve been in our bakery for two months now, do you reckon your readers would be interested in an update?’ asks Stoneham Bakehouse founder and SSE student Simon Cobb.  Well, Simon, they’re a nice bunch and I’m sure that they would. (As an aside, isn’t a baker named Cobb a cracking example of nominative determinism?).

Dirk Bischof and Emma Lange of Hatch Enterprises got in touch with an offer for HIGSENFY readers – take 20% off the price of a ticket for their DIY Weekender which takes place in Oxfordshire between 8th and 10th September. The event unites innovators and entrepreneurs in a camping event and is designed to forge connections, share skills, to have fun and to relax together. Enter the code DIYSSE when you make your booking to get the discount.

While I was getting a bit desperate and thought I might have to write each news article myself I uploaded some of the slides from our recent Working With Corporates workshop. You can take a look here. Obviously it’s not as good as actually coming on the course but you can get a little taster of what we cover on the day.

If you were at our 20th anniversary party there’s now a rather nifty video (featuring some professional dancers and some not quite so professional dancers – no names) and some photos from the photo booth. Who knew that there were so many fans of the Mario Bros connected to SSE?

The Third Sector Excellence Awards came out this week – I’ve only had a quick look but spotted SSE Fellow organisations On Road Media and the Bike Project, both in the Small Charity, Big Impact Award. Good luck to both!

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