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We thought we would have some fun with words this month and created our own HISEZ CIC word cloud. What do you think? Have we missed out any key words? Give it a go for your own organisation, it's a clever way to focus the mind on what is really important to you. 

We have enjoyed looking at all the office views you have sent in these last few weeks for entry in our photo competition.  In case you missed this last month, we want you to send us your office view and the winning entry will receive Â£350 with £100 and £50 also offered for first and second place respectively. The winning entries will hang in our new office
All entries are to be in by Monday 23 February so you've still got a little time left to enter.  Please note that by entering the competition you give HISEZ permission to use these images in any future publications.  Email your photographs into us at the usual HISEZ email address or if you would prefer to post them please send to: HISEZ CIC, 81a Castle Street, Inverness, IV2 3EA. The HISEZ team will judge them and the winners will be announced in next months edition.

We've got lots of information to share with you this month. Our social enterprise of the month is Badenoch & Strathspey Community Transport Group who have been working especially hard this winter with all the snow we've been having. 

HISEZ NETWORKING LUNCHES

Partnership for Enterprise - Tuesday 17 February from 12-3pm, St Magnus Cafe, Kirkwall, Orkney. This networking lunch will explore the issues for social enterprises working together. Find out what has and hasn't worked for similar groups. Sign up here for your free place.

Building a Sustainable Social Enterprise - Tuesday 24 February from 12-3pm, Pulteney Centre, Wick. Join us for this free networking lunch and see how HISEZ could help your business to become more sustainable. Sign up here for your free place.

Building a Sustainable Social Enterprise - Wednesday 11 March from 12-3pm, Forres Learning Centre, Forres. Join us for this free networking lunch and see how HISEZ could help your business to become more sustainable. Sign up here for your free place.

Creating Opportunities - Social Enterprise & Young People - Wednesday 18 March from 12-3pm, The Spectrum Centre, Inverness. This networking lunch is specifically aimed at groups working with young people. Sign up here for your free place.
 
THESE EVENTS ARE ORGANISED BY HISEZ IN ASSOCIATION WITH JUST ENTERPRISE
 
Just Enterprise Workshops 


Advanced Leadership Practice - Wednesday 25 & Thursday 26 February 10am-4pm - Inverness

This advanced course is for third sector leaders, social entrepreneurs and managers who have previously completed a Just Enterprise (or similar) leadership programme and want to further develop their leadership ability and practice. The Advanced Leadership Practice workshops have two key topics: Strategic and Operational Leadership. They create a peer learning environment that builds upon a participant's experience and strengths, allowing individuals to gain insight and knowledge from their peers in a supportive yet challenging environment. Please note there is a £100 delegate fee for this event. Book your place here.
 

Finance for Practitioners 2 day course - Tuesday 24 and Wednesday 25 March
9.30am-4pm - Inverness

This 2 day course is designed around practical financial solutions that can be employed in any organisation. Subjects covered will include:

  • Bank Reconciliation
  • Financial Controls
  • Constructing an annual Profit & Loss Budget
  • Constructing an annual Cash Flow Budget
  • Costing & Pricing
  • Financial Ratios

This is a practical course and delegates will be required to bring along a calculator and writing materials. Book your place here


Pre-Start Leadership 1 day Programme - Thursday 26 March 10am-4pm - Inverness
This one day programme is an introduction to leadership for people who have recently started or are looking to start a social enterprise. This workshop enables learners to develop their understanding of what leadership is and how they want to develop as leaders. Attendance at the workshop will help you face the particular challenges of the start-up phase whilst developing your social enterprise network. Book your place here


Demystifying the Web - Tuesday 31 March 9.30am-4.30pm - Oban 
This full day workshop is targeted at those enterprising third sector organisations that are either embarking on digital marketing for the first time or who want to get more from their existing efforts. It offers an introductory guide to those who are new to or are in some way responsible for the delivery of the digital channel. You may currently feel intimidated and are avoiding the challenge or you might simply want to know more to provide a better performance. Delivered in a friendly, non-technical and informal style. Book your place here.

Social Impact Measurement - Thursday 23 April 10am-4pm - Inverness
In a time of decreased funding and resources it is vital that your organisation can prove its social impact and the value it adds to society. This full day workshop provides an overview of social impact measurement and associated tools and techniques, including:

  • Social Accounting and Audit
  • Social Return on Investment
  • Other recent developments and methodologies

Although heavily subsidised through Just Enterprise, please note there is a £50 delegate fee payable for attendance at this workshop. To book your place click on this link.

Places for workshops are limited and are offered on a first come, first served basis so please book early to guarantee your place. Most workshops are free of charge for members/staff of third sector organisations.

Just Enterprise is a Scottish Government funded programme specifically designed to assist the growth of Scotland’s third sector. Visit www.justenterprise.org or telephone 0141 425 2939 for details of the full range of support available.

Scotland's Vision for Social Enterprise 2025                                 

Social Enterprise Scotland would like feedback on their draft strategy 'Scotland's Vision for Social Enterprise'. View the Strategy document here and get in touch with your views. 
 
The Legacy 2014 Sustainable Sport for Communities Fund
 
This is a £1m fund which will be used to support the sustainability and capacity of aspiring and existing social enterprises delivering sport and physical activity in communities across Scotland. 

The support available will focus on clubs and organisations delivering sport and physical activity in their community who wish to: take on ownership and operation of existing local facilities; to build and operate new facilities; or to make better use of current facilities through capital improvements. 

The Deadline for applications is Thursday 26 February 2015 so if this is for you get applying now! 

 

WESTMINSTER ELECTION FORUMS 2015
Inverness Friday 6 March

Social Enterprise Scotland is holding a series of policy discussions around social enterprise, with the backdrop of the upcoming UK General Election and Smith Commission proposals.

The format of 'Getting the Best Deal for Scottish Social Enterprises' is a panel discussion lasting around 2 hours, with commentators, sector spokespeople and party political representatives.

This event is being held before the narrow election campaigning period, in order to have a more considered discussion about some of the issues facing Scottish social enterprises and how policy changes as a result of Smith and the Westminster election might benefit social enterprise.

Join the discussion at Eden Court, Inverness on Friday 6 March between 2-4pm - book your free place now - please invite your social enterprise friends and share widely.

SOCIAL ENTERPRISE ACADEMY SPRING COURSES

The Social Enterprise Academy have announced their new cycle of learning and development programmes to be delivered across the Highlands & Islands in the coming months. 

With the support of Highlands & Islands Enterprise, all programmes are fully funded / subsidised for people and organisations working towards a social purpose. 

The list of courses is as follows:

  • Understanding Social Enterprise - Isle of Arran - 16 & 17 February
  • Understanding Social Enterprise on Schools - Inverness - 18 February 
  • Starting your Social Enterprise - South Uist - 24 & 25 February
  • Advanced Leadership Practice - Inverness - 25 & 26 February
  • Understanding Social Enterprise - Lerwick - 6 & 7 March
  • Celebrating Women in Social Enterprise - Strathpeffer - 9 March
  • Pre-Start Leadership - Inverness - 26 March 
  • Award in Leadership for Teachers and Education Practitioners - Isle of Skye -         26 & 27 March
  • Award in Leadership - Shetland - 27 & 28 March 
  • Understanding Social Enterprise in Schools - Lerwick - 13 April
  • Measuring Social Impact - Inverness - 16 April
  • Measuring Social Impact - Inverurie - 21 April
  • Starting your Social Enterprise - Fort William - 23 & 24 April
  • Understanding Social Enterprise - Wick - 19 & 20 May
  • Crucial Conversations - Inverurie - 19 May

To find out more and to book any of these course online go to the Academy website alternatively call: 01463 238088.

 
Following on from our sales pitch in last month's edition the offer of sending your products to the American markets of New York, San Francisco, Connecticut or the Hamptons is still live.

HISEZ have now been over to New York and met with a representative from 'Highlands and Islands', a newly established social enterprise who are looking to sell items produced here in the Scottish Highlands and Islands. There are no specifications on the products only that you could envisage them fitting into the homes and lifestyles of the American rich and famous. They can be individual items or mass produced. If you have a look at this website - www.cottagesgardens.com - it will give you some insight as to the markets being tapped into. 

As before if you are interested in taking up this opportunity please send us an email telling us about your product(s), how many items you could produce in a month and what your asking price would roughly be. Please include a photograph of your products too. HISEZ will compile this information for the company who will then consider which items are suitable. Depending on the product they may buy in bulk from you, or you would fulfil orders directly. This is an ideal way to expand your reach by using an existing marketing mechanism and we hope social enterprises take up this opportunity. It is also open to the private sector and particularly small craft producers so please share this post.

Please email us by Monday 23 February with your ideas. If you have any questions in the meantime please contact Polly Chapman by email.
 SOCIAL ENTERPRISE OF THE MONTH
          
Badenoch and Strathspey Community Transport Company are based in Aviemore and have been established and operating in the area since 1998. They became a registered charity in 1999.

More than fifteen years later and the organisation is one of the largest community transport groups in Scotland serving 1,400 registered clients and 35 community groups. 

The aim of the company is to improve the lives of isolated vulnerable people in rural communities by providing support and links to local services which helps them maintain their independence. To achieve this aim the company offers a number of services such as a car scheme which fills the gap in public transport seven days a week, assisted shopping and prescription collection, group hire services and mobility scooter and wheelchair loan. In addition to these core services the group also organise social events to help deal with the loneliness and isolation felt by many of their client group. These include: a monthly tea dance; a friendship service which gives one-to-one support and includes senior school pupils as volunteers; and accessible transport to weekly classes such as Otago, the Sunshine Club, art classes and lunch clubs. 

The service relies a great deal on over 140 volunteers including drivers, passenger assistants, telephonists and befrienders.

"Without our volunteers we simply would not be able to provide the service". Said Development Manager, Maggie Lawson. She added: "We work hard at fundraising too and are always willing to try anything new to help support the work we do. We have established a good working partnership with the Highland Council and with NHS Highland and even more so recently as plans for a new hospital in Aviemore have developed. We are working closely with our partners in the Transport and Access Group to make sure that the transport needs of the most vulnerable in our communities will be met. We also work with the Forestry Commission and our mobility scooter project is in partnership with them."
 
“We received support from HISEZ last year in developing our new business plan. This was to help us work towards securing a better future for the organisation, and so far it has proved very helpful and it keeps us on track”.

To find out more, visit the website or follow them on Facebook

     
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