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Our Activity this year so far...

We thought it may be helpful to keep you updated on our activity this year (April 2018 onwards) to showcase the breadth of work and partnerships we are involved in for the benefit of our membership and the social enterprise community in Glasgow:

The Pocket Guide to GSEN

Technically, this was completed in March 2018 but as this is our current guide to help you explore what a social enterprise is and understand the diversity, we though we'd add this in. The Guide designed by Fablevision Studios can be downloaded here or we have hard copy pocket sized guides, printed by Footprint Copy, which we can send you, just get in touch!

GSEN eNewsletter

Amongst the myriad of communications we regularly send to our members, we have also committed to a monthly eNewsletter. The newsletters contain a range of information from what's happening with our members, funding and tender opportunities, events and training and a whole range of news from Glasgow and beyond. You can sign up on the front page of our website.

Take a look at our previous eNewsletters:


GSEN Sector and Trade Directory

All Full Members have the opportunity to be included in our online Sector and Trade Directories. This membership benefit provides one place where anyone who is looking to engage with our membership can find them either by the sector in which they predominately work in or by the range of services and products that can be sourced from our membership in Glasgow.

If you're looking to buy or connect with social enterprises why not take a look at:

Sector Directory
Trade Directory

Glasgow Schools Dragons' Den

In April 2018, and in partnership with GCC and Social Enterprise Academy, we held our sixth Glasgow Schools Dragons' Den! This year was a bumper year, with 18 pitches from across a range Primary and Secondary Schools in Glasgow. We're delighted to support this event, and with thanks to our members who provide mentoring and support to the young people as they prepare to pitch their social enterprise to an audience of their peers in the City Chambers. A special thanks to our Dragons this year, Ashley Scotland from Thriving Survivors and Mark Armstrong, Young Enterprise Scotland, who always have a tough job on their hands.

Dynamic Purchasing System: Information Session

In partnership with Social Firms Scotland, we held an information system members to provide an overview of DWP’s Dynamic Purchasing System (how DWP is procuring local employability services). DWP staff covered how to register for DPS and the opportunities and challenges it could represent for members, alongside giving an overview of the Community Partner role and other DWP initiatives, particularly Access to Work.

Delegates heard from Aberdeen Foyer, a social enterprise who has successfully bid for and delivered DPS contracts, on their experiences and from P4P on the support they can provide to social enterprises on DPS.

Strengthening Relationships: Where are the Opportunities?

In partnership with Glasgow and West of Scotland Forum of Housing Associations we hosted a networking event aimed at community controlled housing associations and social enterprises from both memberships

We utilised the information garnered from the ten year national social enterprise strategy , priorities and actions to unearth potential opportunities between the housing and social enterprise communities.

Our guest speakers included Scottish Government and Glasgow City Council

We are planning more networking events with GWSF, watch this space!

Sparking Ideas: Creating Solutions for Glasgow’s Social Challenges

Working with UnLtd Scotland, we hosted an event to inspire the next generation of social entrepreneurs to start something good!

This session was open to anyone to help develop ideas for social and community change, and turn them into reality. Our speakers included Weekday Wow Factor, Balornock Uniform Bank and Lingo Flamingo

Unlocking Potential

Alongside the Health, Dundee and Edinburgh Social Enterprise Networks we committed to taking part in a pilot programme to measure and evidence the value of the social networks. The programme, U>P, delivered by Assist Social Capital provides a social capital evaluation platform which can be used for developing action plans that strengthen the impact of outcomes. This work will continue until November 2018.

GSEN Networking Events

We are committed to hosting quarterly networking events, our event in May focused on hearing from guest speaker Alasdair McKinley, Scot Gov on the the current Democracy Matters Agenda, Assist Social Capital on why social capital is important and SENSCOT on there forthcoming briefing paper on mental health.

Our next network meeting in August will focus on building relationships between our range of members in order to facilitate opportunities, partnerships and trade.

Third Sector Concordat

At Glasgow’s first Third Sector Summit in December 2017, the leadership of Glasgow City Council made a commitment to put in place a new Concordat between the local authority and Glasgow’s Third Sector. This Concordat signifies a new relationship between Glasgow City Council and the Third Sector in the city and sets out key principles and ways of working that will strengthen the partnership to shared benefit . It recognises and endorses the Scottish Government-mandated role of the Third Sector Interface (TSI) in coordinating, connecting, supporting and advocating for Glasgow’s Third Sector with the local authority. And it sets out a framework for joint working so that the best outcomes are delivered for Glasgow’s people and “good things happen”. Read more here

Social Enterprise and Community Justice

In partnership with Community Justice Glasgow and Social Firms Scotland we hosted an information sharing and conversation to showcase the work of Social Enterprises in Glasgow and beyond, and highlight their increasing contributions to employment and economic growth within the city.

We wish to strengthen links in the Community Justice arena, and to expand the social objectives they fulfil to a wider audience of individuals and organisations. More work and events are to be planned as a result of this successful event.


We held our first AGM in June! A celebration event held at the Glad Cafe and attended by a range of our membership. We were delighted to hear from Cllr Spear on the support and commitment from GCC and offer a storytelling taster session from the Village Storytelling Centre.

Third Sector Interface Working Group

We are pleased to take part in a working group formed to coproduce a new framework for TSIs. The group is formed of 10 representative TSIs from across Scotland and facilitated by Evaluation Support Scotland.

Social Enterprise Reference Sub Group

We are continuing to participate in the above group which provides an important opportunity for those from front-line social/community enterprises as well as those representing membership-led organisations to discuss and share views on what is working re the National Social Enterprise Action Plan; what may not be; and what may be worth considering in the future.

P4P Advisory Group

We participate in the P4P Advisory Group – drawn from across the SE, Community and Third Sectors – which meets quarterly to feed in issues, comments arising from our membership and to ensure that the P4P is responding adequately to the needs of grassroots organisations.

Glasgow Social Enterprise Strategy

In partnership with Glasgow City Council we have been working for a number of months to develop Glasgow's first co-produced social enterprise strategy which included a wide scale consultation with the social enterprise community and stakeholders.

We are delighted to say that on 28th June 2018 the Glasgow Social Enterprise Strategy was approved by Glasgow City Council City Administration Committee. Also approved was the creation of a Social Enterprise Board, which will be chaired by Cllr Rhiannon Spear.

You can see a discussion at Full Council about social enterprise here. Go to approx 1:16mins.

Social Enterprise World Forum

We are pleased to have had the ability to offer a small number of members bursary places to the above conference to recognise the importance of GSEN Membership being represented at this event.

Pockets and Prospects

We're delighted to be working with SENSCOT in the above pilot programme which will co-ordinate a ‘programme of activities’ available for community anchor organisations to purchase and run for older people in their communities. This will be a ‘pick and mix’ programme offering a diverse range of activities such as language classes, physical activity, befriending etc. Find out more about it here.

ASK Programme

In response to members' needs we are currently undertaking a pilot programme, in partnership with School for Social Entrepreneurs Scotland, offering an Action Learning Set programme. This work started in late 2017.