Social enterprises face unique challenges. They need to keep their customer satisfied, have contented staff, make a profit and have a positive cash flow – all responsible businesses need to do that! But the additional burden – or exhilaration if you are truly passionate – for Social Enterprise is to satisfy your social aspirations too – whether that means serving your community, protecting the ecology or re-solving a social problem.
For me, how I prefer like to serve my community is in helping families to have calm lives. I believe that families, regardless of how you define them or indeed whom you choose to be in your family, are the bedrock of community cohesion. When we feel secure in our family environment, we can step out and do good work in our community.
My community work is focused on families suffering with the effects of PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) and with single mothers wanting to build a career or business. Neither myself nor my colleagues are wedded to those groups, it just happens to be an area of specialism. Therefore, we also support other social entrepreneurs who want to have and make their own and unique impact in the world, through consultancy
I do this by running a business that provides consulting, therapy and coaching. The business uses its profits on a ‘third, third and third’ basis i.e. that is equally into:
- Funding free and reduced rate work for those in need
- Investing in the business to build for the future
- Rewarding those who invested in the business
I would recommend this as a model for other social enterprise’s as it has proven to be sustainable, enabling us to take on and provide our service from premises rather than compromising and working from ours and clients homes.
Purpose of this post? To raise the profile of social entrepreneurs and ask you to find ways to help me raise the profile of the work that we do. Can you help?