The founder of Remade in Edinburgh has won UK Social Entrepreneur of the Year
Remade in Edinburgh’s Sophie Unwin has won UK Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2016 and bagged £10,000 to develop her business.
Sophie pipped her four UK-wide social entrepreneur competitors to the prize after winning the most public votes in an open competition.
The founder of Remade in Edinburgh, which teaches people how to repair household goods and which runs the Edinburgh Remakery shop and workshop space, won the top prize at an event in London.
The £10,000 prize will help us to share our business model with other communities across the UK and could create thousands of jobs
The award was part of the Lloyds Bank and Bank of Scotland Social Entrepreneurs programme, which is run in partnership with the School for Social Entrepreneurs.
Prize money will be used to replicate the success of Remade in Edinburgh in other areas across the UK.
Carolyn Edwards of Genie In The Gutter in Liverpool took home the second prize of £6,000 and Adam Annand of London Bubble in London was awarded £4,000 in third place.
On winning the award Sophie highlighted the whole team behind the success of Remade in Edinburgh, including its volunteers.
“I am delighted to win the Lloyds Bank and Bank of Scotland Social Entrepreneur of the Year Award,” she said. “The £10,000 prize will help us to share our business model with other communities across the UK and could create thousands of jobs.
“Having the support of the Social Entrepreneurs Programme and my Lloyds Banking Group mentor this past year, and being able to learn from a fantastic team and fellow social entrepreneurs, has been a greatly rewarding experience and has been extremely valuable for my own personal development and for Remade in Edinburgh.”
Oli Barrett MBE, presenter of the Social Entrepreneur of the Year Award, said: “It has been a privilege to meet so many passionate social entrepreneurs developing such diverse projects to create real change in society. Sophie is a very worthy winner and I look forward to seeing how she continues to develop Remade in Edinburgh.”
Alastair Wilson, chief executive of School for Social Entrepreneurs said: “It has been fantastic to see the progress of Remade in Edinburgh over the past year and I am thrilled that she has been named the Lloyds Bank and Bank of Scotland Social Entrepreneur of the Year. I have witnessed her project grow into a successful and sustainable enterprise and I look forward to seeing what the future holds for Sophie”.
The Lloyds Bank and Bank of Scotland Social Entrepreneurs Programme provides financial support (grants of £4,000 and £15,000) and comprehensive learning support including a business mentoring scheme.
Launched in 2012, the programme is designed to support social entrepreneurs in communities and, through them, help stimulate economic growth and regeneration across the UK.
Recent research commissioned by the Big Lottery Fund demonstrates the positive impact of the programme on people, businesses and communities and by 2017 the programme will have created over 7,000 jobs and supported 1.1 million beneficiaries.