Networks1st Update: 3rd April 2009

Yesterday, I attended the first meeting of the Social Enterprise Procurment Forum, hosted at the Scottish Parliament. A group of organisations with reach into the social enterprise sector were invited to hear about the Scottish Parlaments approach to purchasing. They have a very refreshing attitude to the whole process backed up by their ‘Responsible Purchasing’ Policy which focuses on reducing environmental impact: Delivering ethical and social improvements within contracts: communicating effectively: and being innovative and pursuing excellence: You can find out more about the kind of contracts they have available by visiting their site Friday was Moray SEN’s 2nd Annual Awards Dinner. There was a great turnout and Richard Lochhead, local MSP and Minister for Rural Affairs and the Environment, came along again to present the winners with their prizes. There were four categories up for grabs including Social Entrepreneur of the Year won by Iain Jamieson (OutfitMoray), Best New Social Enterprise (VIP Childcare), Investment in Excellence (OutfitMoray). The final award for Social Impact went to Elgin Youth Development Group. To find out more about Moray SEN and its members visit RBS SE100 Index charts the growth and impact of organisations that deliver social, economic or environmental change Created by Social Enterprise magazine in partnership with RBS, the index monitors the growth of key players and emerging markets and explores how effectively organisations measure social impact. Capturing vital data from key growth markets, the index will publish the top five in a new market each month and the top 100 at the end of the year. Prizes worth up to £50,000 will be awarded in March 2010, when the full year’s RBS SE100 data will be published. The index is open 24 hours every day online for entries and nominations. The list is currently being topped by Scottish social enterprise Book Donors. It would be great if we could get a couple more up there played host to visitors from Northern Ireland’s Social Economy Network. The trip took in meetings and visits to Six St Mary’s Place, McSence, Edinburgh Cyrenians, The Melting Pot, The Bike Station, Bethany Christian Trust as well as Senscot and the Coalition – who hosted the visit. A super busy 24hours!! The Social Economy Network in N. Ireland is tasked with raising the profile of social enterprise and increasing opportunities for its members. It soon became clear that 3 members of staff are faced with the jobs of the Coalition, Senscot and Firstport put together! The Voluntary Sector in N. Ireland is the ultimate example of local people leading as they have very little support from the Assembly either financially or through policy or strategies. They went away thoroughly inspired and full of ideas with plans to bring a group of members over at some point in the future.Network Notices`Aspire to Enterprise` is a Scottish Government funded programme offering development support to ambitious social enterprises in Lowland Scotland. Aspire is currently offering a series of FREE half day seminars on crucial aspects of social enterprise activity. Strategic Business Planning / Costing Your Services / Marketing for Social Enterprises. See VIDEO CONFERENCING SERVICES WANTED! Emma Margrett, Carbon Challenge Officer at Comrie Development Trust is looking for a social enterprise to provide them with video conferencing services. Emma (previously with CRNS) is looking into setting up a live link up with Westray Development Trust at their conference in June. Anyone interested should contact Emma at for Your DiaryFor more detail of each event go to: Apr S2S, Edinburgh / 28 Apr Edinburgh SEN / 29th April Clacks SEN/ 30 Apr Tayside SEN / 6 May REPS Meeting Glasgow/ 27 May Fife SEN