The latest graduates from the Good Ideas Incubator Programme have been revealed
A host of new social enterprises are set to start up in Scotland.
A total of 10 new projects are being unveiled after they benefitted from the Good Ideas Incubator Programme.
The 16-week programme leads people with an idea through a journey of camps, classes and coaching to the launch of their social venture.
The graduating class is tackling social issues including homelessness, refugee inclusion, sustainability and gender equality.
Class member, Teja Hudson, founded Zero to help consumers and small businesses to make more sustainable choices for the planet.
Hudson said: "Starting a business can be lonely – and even more so as a social entrepreneur. The private sector wasn't talking about the things that mattered to me. Good Ideas made me feel like I wasn't alone in my vision."
Kath MacDonald founded Listen Up in this year’s cohort to support mental health and wellbeing in nursing through storytelling.
Since 2011, Good Ideas has engaged and supported over 200 people to turn their good ideas into new social enterprises, charities and campaigns. Good Ideas has incubated 91 different social ventures, of which 46 still make up the social enterprise fabric across Scotland. Alumni include Invisible Cities, Hey Girls!, StreetFit Scotland and Edinburgh Tool Library.
Collaborator Challenges Group provides space in Montgomery Street Lane for Good Ideas workshops. Neil Fleming, director at the Challenges Group, said: "We have been developing Montgomery Street Lane to become a space for social innovation. Collaborating with Good Ideas is a key part of that vision."
Challenges has developed a second space in the lane that will open in July with free hot-desking for the new social entrepreneurs.
Zakia Moulaoui founded Invisible Cities in 2016 through the Good Ideas incubator. She encouraged the class to keep pushing forward with their ideas, and not shy away from big goals. "The beauty of Scotland is the connections you can make one day that will be supporting your business the next," Moulaoui said. "The people we met through Good Ideas have supported Invisible Cities in our journey, many of whom are here tonight."
Good Ideas is part of The Melting Pot's annual calendar, in collaboration with Challenges and Glasgow Caledonian University. As Scotland's Centre for Social Innovation, The Melting Pot stimulates and supports social innovation by providing a range of practical resources, knowledge, support, and networks to diverse enterprises. The Melting Pot founder and chief executive, Claire Carpenter, said: “Good Ideas draws simple yet effective ideas to create social change – and the people with the impetus to make that happen.”
The innovation incubator will be accepting its first Glasgow-based cohort later this year. More information on the programme and upcoming catalyst events in Edinburgh and Glasgow is available online.