The SENs: Friday 24th February 2017

One of the success stories in our sector, in recent years, has been the impact of the Community Jobs Scotland programme (CJS). At the Gathering this week, First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon announced a new round of funding – with a further £6.1m being pledged to help create 700 new job opportunities for young people between the ages of 16 – 29. Since it started 6 years ago, CJS, managed by SCVO, has help thousands of young people from disadvantaged backgrounds find employment. Many SEN members have participated in the programme – offering both placements as well as employment opportunities to scores of youngsters – providing mutual benefits both to individual young people involved as well as to local social enterprises and communities across Scotland. See Nicola Sturgeon’s full speech. Still at the Gathering – Cabinet Secretary, Angela Constance announced a £1.9m investment (over three years) in community-based organisations to tackle poverty and mitigate UK Govt welfare changes. The investment follows successful ‘pilots’ run by SCVO, DTA Scotland and the Scottish Community Alliance (SCA) – where the focus has been on directing funds at the most local level – to grass-root groups that struggle to find the small amounts that can make all the difference on the ground. The Scottish Govt announced a £900k package of ‘early actions’ being supported by Scottish Govt in advance of production of the SE Action Plan a week or so ago. Here is a breakdown of who will be doing what – and with whom. Senscot will be involved in two of the actions – the Partnership and Procurement Hub – and a feasibility study into how a consortia model could work for local SENs. We will have more info over the next week. News this week that Glasgow SEN (GSEN) has now been incorporated as a company limited by guarantee – and is now just waiting on news of its application for charitable status. Set up in 2008, GSEN has now grown its membership to over 140 organisations across the city – and has benefitted from being hosted and supported by CEiS during this time. GSEN’s Network Manager, Elizabeth McKenna said: “This will have a considerable impact on our ability to grow and develop services and products for members in the future.  It’s a really exciting time and I’d like to thank everyone who has made this possible so far.” Congrats all round. Clearly a big week of funding announcements – and here’s another – with the Climate Challenge Fund announcing its 23rd round of awards – with nearly £10m going out to 113 community-led organisations. It’s good to see a number of active SEN members well represented amongst the awardees. Well done to successful applicants. In 2014, Strathclyde Partnership for Transport (SPT) and the West of Scotland Community Transport Network, embarked on Scotland’s first Community Transport Strategic Public Social Partnership. The aim was to involve service users and community transport providers as equal partners in designing and piloting new services – to make sure they met local community, health and social need. They are now keen to speak with social enterprises (particularly in Glasgow) interested in partnering them to build the capacity and capability of community transport through a Training, Volunteering & Employability programme. To find out more contact Robert MacKenzie or sign up for the New Approaches in Social Transport: The PSP Model Conference, taking place in Glasgow on 1st March.  Notices TENDERS: Grass Sports Pitch Maintenance Framework – Fife Council, Provision of a Mental Health and Wellness Centre in Moray – Moray Council, Children and Young Peoples Services – Scottish Borders Council, Sport and Leisure Services – Stirling Council and more. Join the Ready for Business Linked-In group and follow on TwitterGUIDE: OSCR has produced a new guide – Being a Charity in Scotland – using simple graphics and straightforward language, to help charities understand their responsibilities. With charities making up around 70% of social enterprises in Scotland (SE Census), this new guide will be helpful to many SEN members. ACADEMY: A reminder that The Melting Pot is seeking applications for its 2016-17 Good Ideas Academy – deadline midnight on Sunday 16 October. FUNDING OPPORTUNITY: Business Support Big Lottery Scotland have partnered with the Social Investment Business to provide business support over the next three years to empower the people that support their communities through grant-funded activity. EVENTS: The SE Exchange takes place on Tuesday, 21st March at the Corn Exchange in Edinburgh. Costs – SES members £75 + VAT; Other SE delegates – £100 + VAT; Some bursaries available too. See link to book. NEWSLETTER: The latest Health & Wellbeing monthly newsletter out yesterday. AWARDS: The Bike Station has achieved the Investors in Young People Award at Silver level.  This is an amazing achievement, well done to everyone.  The award is in recognition for the commitment the company has made to support and development young people.  They are our future so a worthwhile cause. TRAINING: GRREC Workshop – An Introduction to PR delivered by Charlene Sweeney, Big Partnership. This workshop will provide an insight into how PR can help you to boost sales, enhance your reputation and raise your profile amongst key audiences.  Dates for the Diary
Scottish Borders SEC, 9th MarchWest Lothian SEN, 21st MarchMoray SEN, 13th April Best wishes,