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23 Jun 2017

A reader sent me a 12 minute TED talk by USA psychiatrist Robert Waldinger; he's talking about his role as the fourth director of the longest study of adult life ever done – 724 men tracked bi-annually for 75 years – to explore what keeps people happy and healthy.  The lesson from thousands of pages of surveys is not about wealth or fame or hard work – it’s simply that people who are more socially connected to family, friends and community – are happier, healthier and live longer; it seems happiness is mostly about our relationships.

            I also enjoyed this interview with a successful New Zealand social entrepreneur called Roy Avery.  He points out, that early in the evolution of our species – everything was a social enterprise; the earliest 'villages' were formed by people working together to survive – developing facilities to be used by everyone – the commons.  Working for the common good was the norm – until 'scale' distorted everything; now money is deployed more for private than community benefit.

            A film on BBC Alba this week showed how on Barra - life is still lived according to community values; we see the eleven hundred islanders – living small and slow enough to deeply feel their community.  Watching the film, I imagined that, if I were young again, I would choose this 'shared' way of life…  But, of course, most young people leave the islands - in pursuit of imagined wealth or fame; it takes the wisdom of later life to appreciate what really matters. Perhaps it has always been thus – always will.



The world is moving too fast – news, surprises, tragedies – we need some calm; we won’t even know till Thursday if the DUP bribes are sufficient to secure the Queen’s Speech vote; it’s all so sleazy. But behind all...Read more

The SENs is the name Senscot gives to our work with Social Enterprise Networks (SENs) - both thematic and geographical. SENs provide members with opportunities for peer support, collective action and market development. The vision is of a growing community of 500 frontline social enterprises across Scotland - connected and energised through a network of Networks.

Visit the new website here

The SENs: Friday 23rd June 2017

Senscot’s Feasibility Study into the Italian Consortia model is due for completion over the summer months. The Study is exploring how, through a collaborative approach, SENs and their members could play a greater role in delivering services in local communities; speaking with a stronger voice both locally and nationally; and increasing their sustainability. This article in New Start Mag cites a new JRF Report - giving examples from around the globe, where the social economy plays a far greater and more valued role than it does in the UK. Themes common to the examples cited include: local Leadership ; supportive ecosystems; long-term partnerships with the sector at a local level; and a far more flexible approach to local procurement. As our new SE Strategy and Action Plan begin to gain traction, these examples give us something to aspire to.


On Tuesday this week, Mary participated in the PKSEN Marketplace event at the Perth Subud Centre.  The event provided members and SE support organisations with the opportunity to meet, network and tell one another about their services. Some PKSEN members had requested ‘one-to-one’ surgeries with support organisations and these were available throughout the event. Great to see so many thematic SEN members participating in the day. Thanks to Katrina MacPherson (SE Development Officer) for organising a great day!


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