The last in our series of local gatherings seeking feedback from the sector to help shape and inform the next SE Action Plan – took place in Moray and West Lothian last week. After hosting 5 SE Reference Sub-Groups involving frontline social enterprises and membership-led organisations, Senscot, with Social Firms Scotland and Scottish Community Alliance, has in recent months engaged directly with over 500 social enterprises at 13 local events. All feedback has been passed on to Social Value Lab who will collate the information to add to the responses (circa 300) to their own recent Action Plan survey – and then fed into Government as the new Action Plan takes shape. Covering so many organisations and events has resulted in a high volume of feedback and wide range of views/opinions. However, there have been a number of recurring themes that emerged at all the meetings. These have included: greater transparency in the decision-making process; better and more regular communication about what is being funded; local decision-making and local delivery wherever possible (bottom-up – not top down); better alignment with other Govt policy areas; and, critically, establishing a clear and consistent resource available to support local SENs. See overview of key points. Also, see note of recent Cross-Party Group on Social Enterprise on same theme.
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Earlier this year, we highlighted a report by the Scottish Human Rights Commission (SHRC), that was arguing that the basic human right to food should be made directly enforceable in Scots Law. Last week, on the same theme, SHRC and Nourish Scotland launched a new 90 second animation on the Right to Food in Scotland – explaining what the Right to Food means, and what’s needed to make it real for people in Scotland – echoing previous calls by both organisations to put the Right to Food into Scotland’s laws.
Following the recent launch of the draft Scottish Tourism Strategy – and the increasing opportunities for social and community enterprises – Highlands and Islands Enterprise and South of Scotland Enterprise are now launching a new programme – Communities Leading in Tourism – focusing on enabling communities to shape the development of tourism in their locality. The online/residential programme, to be delivered by the SE Academy, will run between January – March 2020. Closing date for applications – Monday 16th Dec.
In the first of two P4P blogs for December, the Scottish Govt’s, Scott Bell, (Head of Procurement Development and Construction) discusses how public sector buyers can better leverage procurement spend to help achieve inclusive and sustainable economic growth. Read it here.
Scottish Borders Community Learning Exchange (CLE) in partnership with Inspiralba will now be taking place on 4th Feb – focusing on learning and sharing the experiences of SEs in rural areas – see booking form: Firstport, last week, launched its new funding programme – Boost It – offering awards between £30-50K to social enterprises responding to climate emergency and environmental issues. Closing date – 3rd Feb 2020.
This week’s bulletin profiles a Glasgow-based social enterprise that has the primary aim of removing the disadvantage faced by people with disabilities. Workforce Creation provides high quality technical internships and work placement for recent graduates, with physical and learning disability, in their required discipline – who in most cases have never had the chance to be independent or to work at removing barriers to inclusion. Workforce Creation’s innovative approach to training with both theoretical and practical-based work experience was first piloted through Imteqpro – a community minded business who supported their approach – with the pilot picking up a number of awards.