The SENs: Friday 20th November 2015

Early in October, Senscot commissioned Social Value Lab to do some research on the work of the thematic SENs. With the recent growth in membership and the increasing range of policy developments taking place, we have been keen to get a better idea on how to maximise the support/benefit to SEN members with the resources we have available. As well as this piece of work – due for completion soon – we will also be taking into consideration feedback from last week’s SE Conference and Ceilidh; the ongoing dialogue re the SE Vision document; findings from the SE Census; and, we hope, discussions with other intermediary bodies in terms of how, moving forward, social enterprise can best be supported. This is particularly relevant with the anticipated new Govt Strategy in spring 2016 – in a climate that many are predicting will see a reduction of resources across our sector.

This week, we met with Skills Development Scotland (SDS) to find out more about Youth Employment Activity Plans (YEAPS).  YEAPs are one part of Scottish Govt’s ask of SDS on the Opportunities for All (OfA) guarantee to ensure local service provision is aligned to meet the needs of young people. YEAPs make a significant contribution to CPP planning arrangements on skills and employability activities with each Local Employability Partnership. Given the changes that occur to activities as funding and other factors impact, a YEAP is a working document/local directory (aligned to the employability pipeline) for ongoing review by partners, not a strategy. See more. We’ll pick this up with the Employability SEN with a view to inviting SDS to a future meeting.

Congratulations to East Lothian SEN member, At Home in East Lothian, Scotland’s newest care at home social enterprise for gaining a 5 star rating – for ‘going the extra mile’ from the Care Inspectorate. At Home in East Lothian offers personal care for older people to stay independently at home, working with East Lothian Council, and also provides respite for family carers, companionship for older people and other services like shopping. See more.

Glasgow SEN member, Co-Wheels, a national car club that operates as a social enterprise have been in touch wishing to roll out an offer to Senscot members who might wish access to their local Co-wheels Car Club.  The offer is Free Membership (normally a one off £25) plus £10 of start-up driving credit. To take advantage of this, members need to complete an application online at its website here and insert the code Senscot1 in the promo code box.

On Thursday 3 December, a ‘Central Scotland Social Enterprise Summit’ takes place at the University of Stirling – providing a public platform for discussion and dissemination of information on SE within the Stirling, Falkirk and Clackmannanshire areas. See more.

Senscot attended the Cross Party Working Group on Tourism this week. The impact that other sectors have on tourism was highlighted, including digital developments and the need for remote locations to have access to broadband, reduction in VAT for the travel sector to attract visitors to Scotland, and the need to consider tourism when developing infrastructure.  Accessible and inclusive tourism was identified as an area of growth across the world and the question was asked ‘is Scotland missing out on customers?’  Fergus Ewing MSP, Business Energy and Tourism, stated that he would like to see Scotland leading the way in accessible tourism.


TENDERS: Community Connecting – The City of Edinburgh Council, Contract for the Provision of a Sign Language Interpreting, Translation and Guide Support Service – NHS Forth Valley, “Positive Futures” Research & Evaluation project (2015-2018) – Venture Trust and more. Join the Ready for Business Linked-In group and follow on Twitter.

FUNDING: Time is running out to take advantage of up to 75% funding for Investors in Young People accreditation and advice. Investors in Young People (IIYP) is designed to help employers meet their business goals by harnessing the creativity and skills of Young People.

NEWSLETTER: Latest Scottish Borders SEC Newsletter has all the latest news, events and funding opportunities from the region.

CONFERENCE: See the presentations from the 11th SE Conference & Ceilidh last week. Also, see the ‘Storify’ of all the tweets capturing the highlights of the event.

AWARD: Congratulations to Glasgow Bike Station for winning Environmental Initiative of the Year 2015 Award for the CCF funded Better Way to Work project at PWC Social Entreprise Hub in London. Additionally, two new trustees are sought to join the board.

EXHIBITIONS: The Gallery on the Corner is hosting two preview exhibitions in December. The first will comprise of a range of works in different media which will be auctioned at the preview.

EVENT: ‘Great Minds Don’t Think Alike’ will present a range of speakers who are developing creative solutions that make a positive difference to our world.


Dates for the Diary

Edinburgh SEN, 23rd Nov

Moray SEN, 26th Nov

Perthshire SEN, 30th Nov

Falkirk SEN, 1st Dec

Glasgow SEN, 4th Dec

Moray SEN Drop-in Session, 7th Dec           

Moray SEN Xmas Party, 10th Dec

Edinburgh SEN AGM, 10th Dec

Best wishes,