Capital with a Conscience? Does Social Finance understand social need?

Capital with a Conscience? Does Social Finance understand social need?
Guardian Social Enterprise Network, By Michael Lilley

As founder of My Time CIC, I am currently involved in development of a Community driven Social Impact Bond based on an evidence based approach to enable children (0-16) either in care or risk of being in care due to mental health issues and domestic violence in partnership with Birmingham City Council and Aston University, see here.

We have come a long way but there is the reality of capacity, fixing the right PbR outcomes, getting public sector commissioners working with each other to co-commissioner, the politics of local government to be in synergy with national (cabinet office) government, social investment expectations of return, the right financial modelling and actual what the families/children want themselves.

A big issue is the tender and procurement rules which make it hard for community initiatives to lead and not be in a position of developing a viable project for a large national organisation (third and private sector) coming along and steal it and make the originator of the innovation the principle provider under a sub-contract. These are real now problems I am trying to find solutions for at the same time as trying to give children an option other than years in the care system at an annual cost of £50,000 plus. By the way the average intervention cost is £3000 per child/family.

It is a simple win situation on social impact and savings. The bureaucracy and regulation you have to go through to make it possible is huge and unless Government really enables the My Times (grass-roots organisation) of this world, it is likely just the large corporations making the choices.