What's a Social Enterprise?

Plymouth is a ‘Social Enterprise City’ and parts of it have some of the highest densities of these type of organisations in the country.  Yet the nature of Social Enterprises is not always clear to people.

Ed Whitelaw, from the Real Ideas Organisation, came to speak to us in February and explain what Social Enterprises are and what benefits they offer to people living in some of the most deprived areas of the city.  There’s a whole host of acronyms and operating principles for so-called ‘Third Sector’ bodies, which Ed introduced us to, explaining how Social Enterprises differ from conventional charities. He then looked at how Plymouth’s history and economic situation led to so many being set up in the city, talking us through a list of the most successful and innovative ones.  The follow up Q&A session was really lively and people had plenty of questions to ask and views to air!