Last night, Wednesday 27th November, was Social Enterprise UK’s annual awards ceremony, with arc social enterprise Blue Sky scooping up the Education, Training & Jobs Social Enterprise award.
The event was held in the glamorous LSO St Luke’s, Old Street, London, and were presented by comedy genius Sue Perkins from the Great British Bake Off.
Social Enterprise UK put their Buy Social campaign into action integrating social enterprises into the supply chain throughout the event, across catering, music, event management, printing, design and more. We spotted toiletries from CLARITY in the bathrooms and in the goody bags, alongside a jar of chutney from Rubies in the Rubble and a from babies with love postcard offering 10% off babyclothes.
Social enterprises and supporters of the sector were named winners in 11 categories, selected from tough competition and hundreds of entries from social enterprises across the UK and from every type of industry.
We were delighted to see 9 arc social enterprises and one of our founding partners shortlisted for 7 out of 11 categories. Each and every one deserved the recognition of their successful businesses and social impact.
However the shining star is Blue Sky, who won the Education, Training & Jobs Social Enterprise award, for their achievements creating training and jobs for ex-offenders in grounds maintenance, waste management, recycling and catering across the UK. To date, they’ve helped over 500 ex-offenders back into work - the size of a small prison.
Steve Finn, Teams Director, dedicated the award to Mick May, Founder of Blue Sky, in a moving tribute to his hard work and dedication. We caught up with him today to find out what winning the award means for him and for Blue Sky -
“Having been with the company since day one this is another milestone and such a great achievement! It’s just so fantastic to have this recognition for our hard working staff, and the award is exactly what we are about – training, jobs and social enterprise. We wouldn’t be where we are if we didn’t have the help from other networks such as BITC and the arc programme, and the pro-bono support with BP via arc. We look forward to welcoming back Mick to Blue Sky and showing it off as he left it, but older, wiser and better! ” Steve Finn, Teams Director, Blue Sky
Congratulations Blue Sky! And we look forward to seeing more arc social enterprises and arc corporate partners being nominated and winning in 2014.
Find out more about Blue Sky on their arc profile page.
Click here for full details of the nominations and winners. The shortlisted arc social enterprises, founding partner and categories were:
Category 2 - One to Watch
from babies with love
The House of St Barnabas
Category 3 - Innovation
Category 4 - Social Impact
Category 5 - ’Buy Social’ - Market Builder
Category 8 - Consumer Facing Social Enterprise
Belu Water Ltd
Category 9 - Education, Training & Jobs Social Enterprise
Blue Sky Development and Regeneration
Category 10 - Environmental Social Enterprise
Belu Water Ltd