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Firms and politicians urged to back social enterprises

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A new campaign will support companies looking to buy back better through social enterprise supply chains.

Last year Social Enterprise Scotland launched the Buy Social Scotland campaign promoting gift options that give back from Scottish social enterprises to consumers, with new research highlighting that 38% of Scottish residents are more likely to support social enterprises following the experiences of lockdown.

Building on that success, with 1,000 daily visitors flocking to the website in December, the Corporate Challenge programme is also now being developed to support mainstream businesses to purchase more goods and services from local social enterprises that deliver key social and environmental impact in our communities.

Initial steps will also focus on interviews and survey work to collect insights and data. A new online directory will make it easy for corporates, the public sector and SMEs to find social enterprises that offer goods and services that meet their business needs and can be included in their supply chain.

There are over 6,000 social enterprises in Scotland generating over £3 billion in trading income and employing almost 90,000 people. Social enterprises deliver positive social or environmental change and reinvest their profits into supporting Scottish communities.

The news comes as candidates in the Scottish Parliament election are being asked to sign the Social Economy Pledge to show their support for Scotland’s charities, social enterprises & community groups.

The pledge is led by Social Enterprise Scotland in partnership with The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO), Community Resources Network Scotland, Co-operatives UK, Scottish Community Alliance, Scottish Federation of Housing Associations, SENScot, Edinburgh Social Enterprise and Voluntary Health Scotland.

Chris Martin, Social Enterprise Scotland CEO, commented:

We hope to build on our successful consumer campaign and make it easier for businesses to find and engage with local social enterprises across Scotland.

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Founder Member of Campaign Collective, chair of the Public Relations & Communications Association Charity and Not-For-Profit Group. Write mainly about charity, public sector and social enterprise campaigns.