This newsletter comes in the midst of a big week for social enterprise.

As you have probably seen online and on social media, we are raising the profile of social enterprise through our brand new “Buy Social for a Better World” campaign. Thank you to everyone has participated so far!

Through a combination of member campaigning, new augmented reality technology and the use of celebrity influencers such as Michael Sheen and Caitlin Moran we are reaching out to new audiences and encouraging them to “Buy Social”. You can find out more on how to take part on our website.

Every social enterprise has a unique story to tell. But we also have a collective interest in encouraging every consumer, regardless of what they buy, to be socially and environmentally responsible. The more we can motivate consumers to change their purchasing habits, the greater the market for social enterprise. Everyone wins. 

We saw how Fair Trade revolutionised the way that people buy products, we need “Buy Social” to do the same. If you aren’t currently using the “Buy Social” badge on your products and services, please consider doing so and talk to our Communications Team if you have any questions. If every social enterprise uses this common badge, we have a far greater likelihood of success.

The second big feature of this week has been the launch of our biennial “State of Social Enterprise” survey. This year we have called the report “Capitalism in Crisis?” reflecting the growing realisation across all parts of our society that there is something fundamentally broken in our economic system. The triple threat of climate crisis, social division and economic stagnation are threatening people across the UK and around the world. We need to act.

Our latest research shows, once again, that social enterprises are growing and tackling these threats at the same time. We aren’t asking for the moon on a stick. We are offering practical alternatives to business as usual. This report is full of useful statistics on the characteristics of our sector and how they are going about their business. It can be used for engaging funders, explaining social enterprise to investors and lobbying local stakeholders.

The key statistics and a full copy of the report is available on our website. Please download it and share it throughout your networks.  

It would remiss to conclude this newsletter without referencing the current political environment. An election looks likely, but the timing of this is unclear. It could be as early as late November or it could drag into the new year. Combined with this we have the ongoing Brexit process with an extension also looking likely, but the possibility of No Deal cannot be ruled out. It is important that social enterprises prepare for all eventualities, and we will be providing information to members over the coming weeks to ensure that social enterprises are prepared for both a General Election and a No Deal Brexit. Please keep a look out for further communications.

Happy Buy Social Week!

  

Andrew O’Brien

Director of External Affairs