Something for the weekend?

The flagship event for Social Saturday will be held in Manchester. Here’s what you can look forward to. 

Social Saturday is due to get a big boost in the north of the UK tomorrow, as Key Fund teams up with Social Enterprise UK to host the flagship event in Manchester. The event (and others like it happening all over the country) is intended to boost the profile of social enterprise with the general public.

Pioneers Post has been reporting recently on the strength of social enterprise in the north west, so it seems fitting that the flagship event should take place there. It will be held at Central Working in Deansgate, one of the new kind of working hubs that offer central desk space in a funky environment. As well as networking opportunities, attendees will have the opportunity to listen to speeches by some of the leading lights of the social enterprise world from the region. 

One of them is Claire Dove, Chair of Social Enterprise UK & CEO of Blackburne House, an organisation based in Liverpool that has been offering educational opportunities to women for over twenty years. Evolving from its previous incarnation as the Women’s Technology and Education centre, the original aim was to attract low paid or unemployed women and equip them with the skills to progress into employment in technical professions; an area in which women are traditionally under-represented. A wide range of education and enterprise opportunities are offered there currently. The north west School for Social Entrepreneurs is also based at Blackburne House’s premises.

As well as co-hosting the event at the weekend, Key Fund have good reason to support Social Saturday. As we reported recently, the organisation is the most prolific social investor in the UK. Among its many impactful investments, Key Fund helped community owned football club FC United of Manchester with a community shares pilot, which eventually raised £1.6m towards a new stadium. It also recently backed the club again as a sponsor of one of their matches.

Key FundSam Tarff (middle) at FC United's stadium. Photo credit: Key Fund

Key Fund CEO Sam Tarff will also be speaking at the event on Saturday. Ahead of it, he declared his enthusiasm for Social Saturday: “We are really excited to play such a large part in such a great national celebration, especially here in Manchester where we have had some truly amazing clients such as FC United, who helped us to build this event. 

“Key Fund is all about supporting local enterprises to grow and perpetuate their social mission for the benefit of their communities. We recognise that social enterprises play a huge part within the current growth of SME’s in the UK with a third of all SME growth coming from social enterprises.”

Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury Damian Hinds MP visited FC United of Manchester’s stadium this week ahead of his attendance at the Deansgate event on Saturday.

Social Saturday aims to raise awareness of how easy it is to support businesses that trade quality items and services and invest profits in projects supporting the local community, the environment or charities. Should you wish to attend the event, more details can be found here.


Header photo credit: Mohammad Talha Ghouri