The Scottish Social Enterprise of the Year awards saw local and national organisations recognised
The Grassmarket Community Project in Edinburgh has been named as Scotland’s Social Enterprise of the Year.
Opened as a stand-alone charity in 2010, the organisation has developed a thriving community café and events space in the former Greyfriars’ church hall.
As well as the café, it is enjoying success with woodwork and tartan social enterprises. The project offers a range of social integration and educational activities for members, who have experienced homelessness or mental and physical health problems.
These aim at enhancing life skills and developing confidence and include cookery and baking classes, art, drama, IT, reading and writing, sewing and photography.
Grassmarket Community Project beat off competition from St Andrews First Aid Training & Supplies Ltd and Buth Bharraigh Ltd for the award.
Jonny Kinross, chief executive of the Grassmarket Community Project, said: “We are so delighted to win Social Enterprise of the Year 2017. I’m so proud of our team, our volunteers, our staff but above all the members of our project who inspire and motivate us.
“We’d like to congratulate all the winners and finalists - together we have created a sector to be proud of and proven time and time again how business can change the lives of our most vulnerable, creating a fairer, more inclusive world.”
This year’s Scottish Social Enterprise Awards were presented at the Sottish Parliament.
Chris Martin, chief executive of Callander Youth Project, won Social Enterprise Champion and the One to Watch winner was Edinburgh social enterprise gym Projekt 42,
Fraser Kelly, chief executive off Social Enterprise Scotland, which organises the awards, said: “The Social Enterprise Awards Scotland is a unique opportunity for social enterprises to gain serious recognition for their achievements and raise their public profile. A huge congratulations to the winners and to everyone who took the time and effort to enter this year.”
Other winners were Community Resources Network, which picked up the Buy Social Market Builder award, INCH Architecture and Design, which won the Social Impact award and Instant Neighbour, which took home the Tech for Good award.
Scottish Government cabinet secretary for communities, social security and Eeualities, Angela Constance MSP, said: “I would like to offer my congratulations to all the winners of this year’s Social Enterprise Scotland Awards. Having recently launched a ten-year strategy to grow social enterprise in Scotland, it’s vital we continue to recognise and celebrate the talent of Scotland’s social entrepreneurs. Throughout Scotland, these individuals work tirelessly to improve their communities through the power of social enterprise, reinvesting all profits into social or environmental missions.”
The awards event also included the announcement of the winners of the Social Innovation Competition from Firstport, which celebrates individuals and start up companies using their creativity to solve pressing social issues.