A programme of Public Health Reform is currently underway in Scotland. Given the complexity of Scotland’s current health challenges, the need for this is widely recognised. There is, however, an understanding that these challenges reach beyond the remit of any one organisation i.e. the NHS. Instead, they require the combined efforts of partners from across the public, private and third sectors, as well as from within local communities.
In the context of Public Health Reform this is referred to as ‘whole system working’ and much of programme’s focus is to focus on working with existing partnership arrangements to strengthen collaborative working for health improvement. This presents an important opportunity for social enterprises rooted in local communities.
This Briefing aims to first of all demonstrate the existing contribution of social enterprise in improving health and wellbeing through social and community activities. It will also outline the potential for social enterprise collaborate with public, private and third sector partners to addressing these complex challenges as they develop.
Lorn and Oban Health Options works with individials in the community to develop a pathway to wellbeing. This can be through a range of activities such as exercise programmes, walking groups or social activities.
Grassmarket Community Project in Edinburgh has developed five distinct social enterprises under the one roof, all using social and community activities to improve people’s health and wellbeing.
Centrestage is a social enterprise based in Ayrshire which puts arts at the centre of a programme of activities designed to improve wellbeing. Much of Centrestage’s work pivots around dignified food provision and its EAT and Train programme, which provides education about food nutrition in a social setting.
Transition Extreme is an extreme sports centre in Aberdeen which has developed ‘Alternative Academy’ – a pathway for teenagers and young adults to progress their personal development outside of mainstream education.