The contribution social enterprises make to Moray’s people, places, culture and economy will be celebrated at an awards event in Forres on Friday (25 September).
Highlands and Islands Enterprise and TSI Moray have teamed up to run the Profit for Purpose event, which will include keynote speeches, a theatrical performance and workshops as well as the awards presentations.
Award categories include community impact, enterprising community organisation, environmental champion, young entrepreneur, collaboration, growth and innovation.
Social enterprises trade like any other business, but at their heart they have a social purpose; trading for social, community and environmental benefits and reinvesting their profits to deliver their social purpose.
The full extent and impact of Scotland’s social enterprise sector was revealed for the first time earlier this month in the Social Enterprise Census 2015. There are more than 5,000 social enterprises operating across Scotland, more than a thousand of which are in the Highlands and Islands and 124 of these are in Moray.
David Oxley, HIE area manager for Moray and one of the judges, said: “As shown in the recent census, social enterprises make a huge contribution to society and to the economy in the Highlands and Islands and to Scotland as a whole. It is a business model that helps tackle social issues, promote equality and achieve sustainable economic growth.
“In Moray we have a very active, ambitious and strong social enterprise sector. The Profit for Purpose event and awards is about recognising the contribution these enterprises make to society and the economy in Moray. It also provides an opportunity to share experiences and best practices and strengthen collaboration to help the sector continue to grow with confidence.”
Although home to only 9% of the country’s population, the Highlands and Islands accounts for 22% of all social enterprises in Scotland, which contribute £130million to Scotland’s economy and employ 7,315 people. Seventy percent of them pay the living wage. Across the region there is a 50:50 gender balance on the boards of social enterprises and 60% of them have a female as their most senior employee.