Winners of the Scottish Social Enterprise Awards announced

The winners of the 2017 Scottish Social Enterprise Awards were announced this week at an event in The Scottish Parliament.

The Grassmarket Community Project in Edinburgh was revealed as the 2017 Social Enterprise of the Year.

Jonny Kinross, CEO 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 tonight – 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.”

These annual awards, which are organised by Social Enterprise Scotland, recognise innovation and success in social enterprise.

The Scottish Government's communities secretary, Angela Constance, 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.

“I am pleased that this year’s social enterprise census shows there are now 5,600 social enterprises in Scotland - one social enterprise for every 1,000 people. There are now more start-ups and more social enterprises trading directly with the public than ever before.

“Our nation is now recognised as a world leader in social enterprise, and is confirmed as host of next year’s Social Enterprise World Forum. This is another excellent opportunity to put Scotland’s social enterprise sector on the world stage, welcoming friends and neighbours from around the globe and celebrating all we have achieved.”

Full list of winners at the Social Enterprise Awards Scotland 2017:

Social Enterprise of the Year

The Grassmarket Community Project supports socially isolated vulnerable adults and provides them with a range of support services as well as the opportunity to train, volunteer or work in any one of their five social enterprises which include an events space, a café, a staff canteen, a recycled wood workshop and textiles enterprise. 

One to Watch Award

PROJEKT 42 works to strengthen the connection between physical fitness and mental health through fitness classes, life coaching and counselling. 

Social Impact Award

INCH Architecture & Design Ltd (INCH) / Sir Robert McAlpine – INCH Architecture & Design is a social enterprise architecture and research practice, committed in company style and ethos to improving the built environment and the communities in which we build.

‘Buy Social’ Market Builder Award

The Community Resources Network Scotland (CRNS Reuse Consortium) aims to provide a more sustainable and affordable choice to customers and local authorities alike, by offering the option of purchasing reused furniture instead of new.

Tech for Good: Technology in Social Enterprise

Instant Neighbour supports those on low incomes to set up home, by selling low cost, good quality second hand furniture.

Social Enterprise Champion

Chris Martin (Callander Youth Project Trust) has been managing director at CYPT for six years and the judges said he has shown exceptional strategic leadership taking the project from a small room in McLaren Learning Centre to establishing a successful suite of social enterprises consisting of a five star hostel, café and events venue in the newly refurbished Callander Hostel.

Social Enterprise Champion - Highly Commended

Andrew Bailie (Freshsight) is the director of FreshSight, a student-run social enterprise which provides consultancy services for socially driven organisations. Last year, he doubled the number of social enterprise projects in order to position the students closer to the social innovation scene and maximise FreshSight's impact.

To find out more about the 2018 Social Enterprise World Forum, which will be returning to Scotland for its 10th anniversary, click here.