Richard tells some stories of working in social innovation and with social entrepreneurs in the UK, to potential students of the first Integrated Business and Humanities class at McMaster University, Canada.
If you’d just like to read what I said, I have included the full transcript here:
(I would like to talk to about..) the kind of social innovation and social enterprises that I worked in over the last 6 years, to give you some ideas of the kind of interesting organizations that perhaps you’ll go on to work with, support or start after this course.
As you can tell from my accent, I’m not from Canada. I’m actually from a small island called the Isle of Man but that’s a story for another time.
I was working in London from about 2010 until recently, supporting many social enterprises, and I’d like to tell you some examples of that work that hopefully you’ll find interesting and inspiring. Continue reading
Looking for capital? In collaboration with Impact Hub Westminster, I’m running their first ever Impact Investment Readiness programme. We designed it to help social entrepreneurs find impact investment within the next 12 months.
In October 2014, we took our first cohort through the programme (pictured above), and got some great feedback. If you are a social enterprise based in London, you can apply for the free programme until December 1st 2014.
Below you’ll find just a taste of some of the skills, tips and tricks that the #SocEnt startups were able to learn, and put into practice on the programme.
Play at the right level
You’ve heard of crowdfunding, you’ve watched Dragon’s Den, and you know you could get a loan from the bank. But which is right for you now?
Paul Grant talks about the different levels of the funding game. Continue reading
If you are looking for the best free self-guided tour of East London, this is my recommended route. I recently worked with the British Council to guide a group mostly Hong Kong citizens around some of the best social enterprises in London. A great group NGO workers, academics, and social entrepreneurs. Get in touch via the comments if you’d like take this tour with me.
Bromley By Bow FoodCycle is a charity social enterprise that combines volunteers, surplus food and spare kitchen spaces to create tasty, nutritious meals for people at risk of food poverty and social isolation.
Service with a smile
Learning more about Foodcycle
We stopped for a talk from Helena Chouchani to learn more about their growing number of FoodCycle Hubs across the UK, and franchising plans for expansion. Of course we stayed for a yummy lunch too!
Bethnal Green Bikeworks runs a variety of community cycling programmes including employability for disadvantaged groups, all ability cycling, bicycle reuse and recycling, school cycle training and more. As a business it provides cycling services to consumers and organisations – so buy your next bike from here!
Beautiful shop (and group!)
We were lucky to have a private tour from co-founder Jim Blakemore. He talked about the entrepreneurial journey, and how their social outcomes can continue to grow as the business grows.
I live in London, but the Isle of Man is my homeland. It’s a beautiful place to grow up. It’s also a pretty great independent economic microcosm. If you can test out an innovative business on the Isle of Man, and succeed with it, it might just be scalable around the world.
What do you already know about the Isle of Man? The TT motorbike races? Mark Cavendish? The special tax laws?
None of the above? If you’ve spent any time with me, you’ll know that I love to talk about it.
The question everyone asks: is it a country?
No, not exactly. It’s a self-governing British Crown Dependency, which is not part of the UK. It is one of the oldest continuous democratic governments in the world. That’s why I’m so diplomatic.
What’s the vision?
After a recent meeting with the Government Department for Economic Development, it was great to learn that the Island has the ambition to become an international hub for tech and e-business innovation.
Not a lot of people know that e-business is the fastest growing sector of the economy on the Island, and it’s estimated to provide 90% of the economic growth in the Island’s emerging business sectors by 2020. That’s a lot of growth from tech entrepreneurs. How can we make it happen?
How the Island can stimulate innovation
Increase coworking options