Summer is officially here - the schools are out! And it's been sunny for more than one day so we've taken our arms and legs out of hibernation and we're stocking up on happy rays to keep us going until next Summer. For us the sun is a rare thing so I think we crave it even more. Is this the same as the products we buy? If something is rare, many of us will want to buy it and therefore the price goes up accordingly. But what makes people want to buy such items in the first place? 

If we take cars as an example, they are basically all the same - a machine built to take us from A to B. So why do they differ so greatly in price? They have different specifications and come in different colours and some will have more seats and gadgets than others but essentially the same. It all comes down to marketing. If you can persuade the masses that your car is the fastest, safest, coolest, most original, most beautiful then you can charge an extortionate amount of money and create and sell a small number thereby creating a reputation and your next product will be even more expensive and even more sought after. So how much time do we spend on marketing? Maybe its time we gave it a bit more thought. Or we could just go outside and make the most of the sun while we can!

This month sees another relatively new social enterprise and another beautiful shop as our feature. The new Everything Baby shop in Inverness opened its doors to the public only a couple of weeks ago. See how well they are doing.


Understanding Social Enterprise, Contin - Aug 21 & 22                
Social Return on Investment, Durness - Aug 25 & 26
Social Accounting & Audit, Contin - Aug 27 & 28
Marketing Your Social Enterprise, Portree - Sep 8 & 9 
Leadership Award, Tongue - begins Sep 11 & 12
Leadership Award, Inverness - begins Sep 16 & 17
Leadership Award, Craignure - begins Sep 16 & 17
Leadership Certificate, Elgin - begins Sep 25 & 26
Leadership Award (Residential) Eigg - begins Oct 7 - 9 

There is no cost for any of the programmes, including accreditation, and accommodation and transport for the residential on Eigg.

Places are limited, so to reserve your place call Kate on 01463 238088 or email .

Comann na Gaidhlig (CNAG) have developed a scheme to assist new Gaelic related projects and innovations with £15,000 of project funding available. Your project may be eligible if it demonstrates new and innovative thought, has an intrinsic Gaelic element and could be applied to the commercial sector. For more information please follow this link.

CNAG also support organisations to use Gaelic in marketing and promotional materials such as bilingual signs, leaflets, vehicle graphics and uniforms. Varying levels of funding are available. Please follow this link for further information. 

These schemes are open to businesses and social enterprises across the HIE area and are a great opportunity for groups to use the Gaelic language and heritage in marketing and promotion. 

Both schemes are funded by Highlands and Islands Enterprise. 



Everything Baby is a relatively new business based in Inverness which sells donated pre-loved baby, toddler and maternity items. The social enterprise, which was established in 2012 as a registered charity, also provides parenting support to local families including free workshops on topics such as Carbon Clever Parenting. 

The end of last month saw the opening of the new Everything Baby shop in Church Street with a family fun day of activities attracting many parents to view the retail space. The shop includes a Parenting Room which can be hired out for various events and classes and is the ideal venue for parents of young children to meet. There is also a tranquil garden space at the rear.

The shop accepts clothing, furniture, prams, equipment, books and toy donations from all over the Highlands and you can drop off items with volunteers in Tain, Avoch and Dornoch to name a few. Donations are welcome at the shop every day of the week bar Sunday. The charity's innovative online 'Click and Collect' shop was launched in April. This will soon be offering a postal service so that families from outwith Inverness can also benefit from the affordable prices and excellent quality.

And if you are interested in volunteering, Everything Baby has a wide range of opportunities from manning the shop, gardening, sewing to helping with the online shop and social media. Or if you would like to become a member and have a real say in how the group deliver for Highland families the website has all the information you need -  

For all the latest, find them on facebook:



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