Having been fortunate enough to have lived, worked abroad and set up a family business whilst enjoying a career that has taken me to many places; it wasn’t until last year’s voluntary redundancy that I finally enjoyed much needed time off. Rather than spending my entire life jumping through hoops often without asking why, I decided that I didn’t want to waste my time living someone else’s life. This period has given me the opportunity to reflect and look inward to understand what really matters. I felt instinctively there was something more meaningful that I could be doing…
I became aware of the term social enterprise only last year through my work as a volunteer at an International development charity – ActionAid. The social enterprise model makes complete sense to me: You generate income in an entrepreneurial way using a traditional business model, but control how the surplus is used to have a direct and positive impact on a community.
I began learning more about different social businesses, so when I came across _SocialStarters through an ESC mailing, their programme really appealed to me. As a sales professional, I have always enjoyed working with people, consulting businesses and understanding their challenges and needs. Being able to offer advise and solutions, as well as watching their business grow is very satisfying. Also, having personally experienced the highs and lows of running a business, I’ve developed a deep interest in wanting to help others on their journey.
Currently I’ve started hosting monthly social enterprise meet ups, which anyone is welcome to join. Furthermore, I am putting together the 2015 Social Enterprise Conference, which will take place October 12th in London. These platforms are designed to help nascent social entrepreneurs to learn, connect, and be inspired. I do believe that no man is an island and the more social entrepreneurs we are able to support, the more impact we make! I can’t wait for the experience in Sri Lanka to start. This will be a unique opportunity to be immersed in the culture and see first hand how social enterprises are helping communities. I also hope this will be a start to developing some of my own projects and truly doing something that makes a difference.
If you’re interested in joining us we still have a few places left for our summer programme in July, but hurry! Interested? Send us your CV & a cover note and if successful we’ll book you in for an interview ASAP. Places will go on a first come first serve basis so don’t delay!