#BuySocial this Saturday
Support Cambridge's thriving Social Enterprise sector on Saturday 14 October and make a difference with your shop.
This weekend marks the 4th annual 'Social Saturday' - a nationwide day of events and activities to celebrate the UK's booming social enterprise sector. It aims to raise awareness of the difference social enterprises make, both locally and around the world, and to encourage members of the public and businesses to support these ventures when making purchasing decisions.
Social enterprises are businesses that trade to meet a social or environmental mission. In Cambridgeshire, work to promote this growing sector is led by Allia, also a social enterprise. Martin Clark, deputy chief executive of Allia said: "We've registered over 300 Social Enterprises on the County database since last year, from cafes to print shops, lingerie to cleaning services, garden furniture to luxury chocolate; the county has it all."
The latest Social Enterprise UK figures show nearly 80,000 social enterprises in the UK, employing over a million people and contributing more than £24 billion to the economy.
Daniel Zeichner, MP for Cambridge said, 'the Social Saturday campaign is a fantastic opportunity to recognise and promote the valuable work of Social Enterprises across Cambridgeshire, not only this weekend, but every day.'
But who - and where - are these ventures? And how can you #buysocial? We spoke to four local Social Enterprises, to find out what they do and how your spending habits can make a bigger impact than you might think.
Stylish, sustainable and social.
Responsibly sourced, free from toxic chemicals, earth conscious and long lasting, underwear from Cambridge-based ethical lingerie brand AmaElla ticks all the boxes.
'Our ultimate goal is to change consumer behaviours, encouraging people to be more curious about where their fashion comes from (and how it's made) and to force designers and retailers to be more open about ethical and environmental impacts of their products.' Lara Miller, Creative Director
Buy online: https://www.amaella.com/
Offering handmade paving and garden accessories, Phoenix Milton provides supported work experience and employability qualifications to young people and adults with a range of learning difficulties. The site has a concrete factory, carpentry workshops, a kitchen garden and canteen kitchen, and is open to the public for the sale of products produced on site.
'Choosing to buy from us not only supports our training programmes, it also gives the trainees themselves a sense of achievement and worth, as a valued member of the community. The buzz they get when something they have worked hard to make is purchased gives them a real sense of worth.' Al Nicol, Learning Support Assistant at Phoenix.
Place an order online for collection and payment onsite. Open Tuesday - Friday 8:30am to 3.30pm
Call 01223420669 or visit http://www.phoenixtrust.org/wp/
Promoting your business
A 'one stop shop' for designing and printing marketing materials, t-shirts, mugs and more, Burwell Print has been training and supporting adults with learning disabilities for 25 years, while providing a dependable and friendly personalised service to its customers.
Place your order online: http://www.burwellprint.co.uk/
Coffee & Lunch
Next time you grab a coffee, your latte could help transform someone's life. The Edge Café supports people battling addiction who've reached the end of their treatment or rehab. Offering support, wellbeing and skills workshops and volunteering opportunities with training in all aspects of running a café, the Edge team also offer peer mentoring training.
'As we are a not for profit company, all our profits go towards funding our programme of workshops and support groups for people in recovery from addiction. People in recovery can volunteer here to gain skills and confidence.' Andy Ahmad-Cooke, Recovery Coordinator, Edge Café.
Find The Edge Café at 351 Mill Road, Cambridge, CB1 3DF. Orders can be placed by phone on: 01223 212478. http://theedgecafecambridge.org/menu
On Social Saturday, The Edge will be open as usual 9.00 - 16.00, with a Pilates workshop at 10.00.
Other Social Enterprise cafés & pubs in the county:
- Switch Now - 13 Foundry Eaton Socon PE19 8TR and Loves Farm House Kester Way St Neots PE19 6SL http://www.switchnow.org.uk/switch-cafe/
- The Hemingford Garden Room CIC - Hemingford Garden Room, Garden Café, 33 High Street, Hemingford Grey 01480 467250 http://www.hemingfordgrey.org.uk/about/church/hemingford-garden-room/
- Joan's Coffee Shop, Emmaus, Green End, Landbeach, Cambridge CB25 9FD https://www.emmaus.org.uk/cambridge/shops_and_services/joans_coffee_shop
- The Plough and Fleece Pub, High Street, Horningsea, CB25 9JG, 01223 860 795, http://www.ploughandfleece.com/
Find more social enterprises across the UK at http://buysocialdirectory.org.uk/