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HL BaSE London hosted 6 amazing social enterprises at an HL BaSE Catalyst pro bono workshop. Delegates were treated to an introductory talk from Will Hutton, co-Chair of the Purposeful Company Taskforce on purpose and profit before breaking out into their individual advisory sessions. Volunteers from BNP Paribas, Ford, HSBC and Citi joined volunteers from Hogan Lovells to advise the social entrepreneurs.

Some of the inspiring social enterprises we met included:

  • ToolShed, a social enterprise giving young people the personal and practical skills to chisel out a career in the construction industry.  It does this through an education programme (which combines the teaching of carpentry, plumbing and painting and decorating alongside life skills) for people aged between 16-24 and through its handy person service, ToolShed Works. It also offers consultancy services for those working with young people.
  • The National Housing Federation has launched a ground-breaking innovation programme bringing together housing association innovators to develop new products, services and approaches that help tackle society’s biggest challenges.  Building Better is one of the projects coming out of the programme which will work to enable housing associations to have greater control over the homes they build and how they maintain them, transforming how we deliver affordable homes.
  • Alpha Vesta helps victims of domestic abuse and stalking by providing one to one support and advocacy to help them move forward with their lives.  In England the estimated overall costs of domestic violence is £5.5bn per year with £1.9bn of this in lost economic output.  Alpha Vesta supports workplaces and other organisations through training, policy development around domestic abuse and stalking and advocacy and support to any of their employees disclosing abuse. 
  • Turning Tide Ventures, based in Warwickshire, aims to challenge the fact that 85% of people on the autism spectrum are unemployed & autism costs the UK economy £32,000,000 per annum.  It is creating an Autism Hub providing employment opportunities & training to prepare individuals for the workplace then match and source suitable jobs via our recruitment team.  Within its “Hub” it operates a valeting centre which provides direct employment and work experience.  Its solutions give individuals & their families’ confidence, independence and a true sense of social inclusion.
  • East London Connect is working with organisations to diversify and offer opportunities to young people from BME backgrounds. Its aim is to encourage the next generation of underrepresented groups such as black students to aspire to top universities and a variety of careers.  Last year it launched a university mentoring scheme with the African Caribbean Society at UCL and pupils in year 10 at a local state school in Stratford.