Flying the Flag for Social Enterprise

Wow!  We are delighted that from babies with love is an England finalist for Start Up of the Year at the Social Enterprise 2012 awards!

We are shortlisted amongst some great social enterprises, from an organization creating jobs for ex-offenders to one that works to widen access to top universities for students from disadvantaged backgrounds.

So we’re feeling very honoured!

Many people don’t know what a social enterprise is… I hope that very soon it will be a widely understood term… in the meantime we hope we are helping spread the concept through our online shop.  In addition to from babies with love, I bet you’ve come across a social enterprise, but maybe without realising it… Have you ever bought a Big Issue? Been to the Eden Project? Watched Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen?

Social Enterprise UK describes social enterprises as “…businesses that trade to tackle social problems, improve communities, people’s life chances, or the environment.  They make their money from selling goods and services in the open market, but they reinvest their profits back into the business or the local community.  And so when they profit, society profits”.

from babies with love is a social enterprise because we sell baby clothes and donate 100% of our profits to fund the care of orphaned and abandoned babies.

We, like many social enterprises, are accredited by the Social Enterprise Mark. This means that from babies with love has proved it is genuine against independently assessed criteria for social enterprise. The Mark provides assurance that our profits are used to improve the lives of orphaned and abandoned children, acting as a guarantee that from babies with love is trading for people and planet.

The social enterprise sector is growing and my bet is in time we’ll have many more options to buy products – that we would buy anyway – from social enterprises.   The thing I love about that is it’s a win-win-win situation:

–       You enjoy your product,

–       You get the added bonus of enjoying knowing the profit is helping society,

–       Society is better off as a result of your purchase.

Fingers crossed that from babies with love progresses in the Social Enterprise Awards!  But most of all I hope all the amazing social enterprises, across all the award categories, will continue in their successes – so that in no time at all buying from social enterprises is just an everyday part of what we all do.

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