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Blog | 17 June 2015

Last night I was delighted to present Good Will Solutions CIC with the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award for the Midlands in the Social Entrepreneur Category.

Blog | 12 June 2015

Since the Social Investment Tax Relief (SITR) was first announced in last year’s Budget, it has offered a new dynamic to social impact investing.

Blog | 12 June 2015

Not all business investments are created equal. That’s why we’re delighted to see new research from Harvard Business School (HBS) that shows that companies that make serious investments into the most important social and environmental factors can create significant business value relative to their peers.

Blog | 11 June 2015

One might make the same judgement about the availability of data in the social investment market. For both charities and social enterprises, and social investors, collecting, processing and sharing data in a comparable manner is difficult.

Blog | 11 June 2015

One might make the same judgement about the availability of data in the social investment market. For both charities and social enterprises, and social investors, collecting, processing and sharing data in a comparable manner is difficult.

Blog | 4 June 2015

Last month, Prince Charles visited the Homeground Hostel in Liverpool to meet young homeless people helped by Local Solutions, a charity supporting vulnerable and excluded people throughout the Merseyside region.

Blog | 27 May 2015

There is consensus in the UK that financial exclusion is a major problem. After years of branch closures, and post-crisis pressure to tighten lending standards, high street banks are increasingly withdrawing from lower-income communities and marginal businesses – leaving many individuals, businesses and charities unable to access appropriate and affordable financial services.

Blog | 26 May 2015

Over the past five or so years, social investment has been a key part of my life. One of the most heartening aspects has been the cross-party support that it has generated. While initiatives such as the early development of Big Society Capital took place under a Labour administration, the last Government continued to drive real action in social investment. From the Social Investment Tax Relief to the expansion of Social Impact Bonds in the UK from one to 25, the last five years have seen significant strides. But now is not a time to rest on laurels. Much more is needed to help enable and harness social investment as a key tool for delivering social impact.

Blog | 21 May 2015

Earlier this week, more then a hundred people from across the social sector gathered to celebrate Big Society Capital’s third anniversary and the launch of our Annual Report. We heard from a panel of speakers, comprising of Joanne Hay, CEO of Teens & Toddlers, Kate McLeod, CFO of Mencap, Andy Walsh, General Manager of FC United of Manchester and Dai Powell, CEO of Hackney Community Transport. Each shared their experience of taking on social investment, what it has allowed their organisations to do and how the market has developed over the last few years.

Blog | 19 May 2015

Early attempts to introduce payment by results into public services may have been met with scepticism, but the coalition government made important progress in developing new commissioning mechanisms that focus on paying for outcomes rather than simply paying for services, and showed a willingness to learn. Read more in The Guardian >>

 

Blog | 19 May 2015

If I were Justice Secretary I would update procurement practice to align with the ambition of charities and social enterprises playing a key role in delivering criminal justice services.

Blog | 15 May 2015

Mental illness is the largest single cause of disability in the UK. Almost one in four adults in the UK and one in 10 young people have a mental health problem, and nine out of ten people experience stigma and discrimination. The stigma associated with mental illness can often mean that many people hide their condition and do not seek appropriate support. 

Blog | 12 May 2015

Like all the best ideas, it’s very simple. The majority of people who need mental health services don’t currently access them – whether because of logistics, worry about asking for help, or not knowing what’s available. Lots of people use the internet. So let’s offer them safe and effective mental health support online.

Commonweal
Blog | 6 May 2015

BBC One recently screened a Panorama documentary called ‘The Great Housing Benefit Scandal’ which highlighted the dire conditions that some social tenants face from living in the private rented sector including severe overcrowding, freezing conditions and harassment. The programme stated that an estimated £3 billion of housing benefit is spent annually on poor quality private rented accommodation and suggested that some landlords are exploiting vulnerable tenants.

Blog | 1 May 2015

The Business Impact Challenge attracted corporates from all sectors, and we quickly realised that corporates are approaching social investment for a wide range of reasons.  Some companies purely wanted to “do good”; others wanted to use an investing approach to help them find “the next big business idea.” 

Blog | 29 April 2015

Continuing our series of guest blogs, Chris Wright, Chief Executive of Catch22, looks at how social investment can transform public services.

Blog | 23 April 2015

The Business Impact Challenge, a £15 million investment prize for an innovative business making social investments, has been open for three months. 

Blog | 22 April 2015

The next government must take into account social outcomes when reviewing spending in 2015 argues Matt Robinson, the former deputy director of the prime minister’s strategy unit and current head of strategy and market development at Big Society Capital.

Blog | 15 April 2015

Oomph! exists to transform the quality of life of older adults.  We train and support staff in care settings to deliver exercise and meaningful activities that increase physical mobility, improve social interaction and enhance mental stimulation of older adults, particularly those with dementia.   

Blog | 10 April 2015

NCVO recently organised a series of social investment workshops supported by the Cabinet Office for charities and social enterprises.These sessions, held in Exeter, Ipswich, Leicester and London, aimed to raise awareness of the different models of social investment that are available.

Blog | 7 April 2015

It was announced this week that the Real Lettings Property Fund (RLPF) has achieved a final close at £56.8 million, with three new investors and a high net worth individual together adding a final £10.3 million.

Blog | 30 March 2015

On 18th March, Social Enterprise Yorkshire and Humber held their annual Working Capital Conference bringing together some of the leading experts in social investment with local social enterprises to learn more about emerging products and models. This year’s conference was befittingly held at Unity Works, a major events venue in the 80s which itself has been refurbished through social investment after receiving a capital grant as part of the Community Assets and Services Fund

Blog | 25 March 2015

Last week, Big Society Capital held a seminar on social investment and social care with members of the Care & Support Alliance. Scope CEO, Richard Hawkes, shares his thoughts on the relevance of social investment in addressing some of the issues around health and social care.

Blog | 24 March 2015

There is good news and bad news when you are an only child. The good news is, you get all of the attention. The bad news is, you get all of the attention. When you are an only child, you are expected to be good at everything. Of course, nobody, and no organisation, is made that way.

Blog | 18 March 2015

Continuing our series of guest blogs, Richard Nicol from Midlands Together talks about the difference social investment has made to ex-offenders in the Midlands.