Three high-peforming social ventures were crowned champions this evening at this year’s RBS SE100 Index awards ceremony.
Right Track, P3 and Patchwork People were named winners by the judges for their strong growth, high standards of social impact reporting and solid business arrangements.
The RBS SE100 Index compiles data about the growth and social impact of the UK’s social enterprises. The winners were picked from more than 1,000 listed on www.se100.net and share a £25,000 prize fund.
Ian Walters, MD of business banking at RBS, said: “This year both the quality and quantity of applicants has been extremely strong, a testament to the success of the sector.
“We congratulate the 2013 winners and applaud all those organisations across society who are striving for positive change in their communities through entrepreneurship and enterprise.”
There were three different prizes:
Growth Champion: Right Track Social Enterprise
This East Midlands enterprise grew by 146% from 2012 to 2013. The judges said they were particularly impressed by the energy and enthusiasm of the team and their ability to develop the business successfully in new directions.
Stuart Bell, CEO, said: “I set up Right Track initially to help people who mainstream education had let down.”
Founded in 2009, the venture’s mixture of training and apprenticeships for young people and adults who struggle the most to find work is proving phenomenally successful. Its turnover has grown to more than £1m in just four years.
“I want to grow Right Track to help more people,” said Bell. “We’d like to go national. We’d like to be a household brand.”
Impact Champion 2013: P3
P3 says it wants to tell donors, commissioners and beneficiaries about what it is doing and why it is doing it. This commitment to reporting its impact impressed the SE100 judges, they said.
P3, based in the East Midlands, has worked for more than 30 years in some of the most deprived areas in the UK helping vulnerable people to rebuild their lives.
It aims to overcome some of the challenges that the public sector can no longer tackle alone through a wide range of services, including education for young people who are struggling in mainstream schools, Jobshop – an employment service, and temporary accommodation and intensive support for homeless people.
Mark Simms, acting chief executive, said: “We have looked long term into what impact we have had on the beneficiaries, and then looked at the impact we have had on the wider community and the impact on society as a whole.
“It makes completely sound business sense to do that – we need to tell donors, commissioners and beneficiaries about what we are doing, why we are doing it and what our service is.”
Trailblazing Newcomer 2013: Patchwork People
Patchwork People is a new social enterprise that not only doubled its turnover in year two, but is also working hard to reduce its grant dependency.
It aims to help young people develop their talents and confidence through working with the Labelled brand of clothes and accessories which are sold through a shop in Darlington and at markets and festivals.
Founder Gill Walker set up the enterprise after being made redundant following 30 years in the public sector. She is now making use of her skills gained through working with young people and families as well as proving she’s got a keen business head.
“We quickly learned we needed to look at income streams, we needed to generate income to become self-sustaining as a social enterprise,” she said.
Patchwork People impressed the RBS SE100 Index judges not only with its financial performance, but with its commitment to proving its social impact too. “It’s not just about keeping young people busy,” said Walker. “We have to evidence the difference we are making.”
Find out more on the new, live RBS SE100 Index web platform.The RBS SE100 Index is run by Pioneers Post’s sister company, Matter&Co