CITY homeless charity Emmaus Sheffield is getting ready for Social Saturday – a day to show how business can be done differently.
Emmaus Sheffield is a working community with quality, self-contained accommodation, training facilities and a workspace for previously homeless men and women aged 18 years and over.
It aims through its Social Enterprise programme to provide meaningful work and enable the people it supports – known as companions – to eventually become self-supporting once more.
The charity will be celebrating Social Saturday on October 13 – a nationwide campaign designed to raise awareness about those businesses which are doing things differently, putting people and communities first.
One of Emmaus Sheffield’s main fundraising schemes is its extremely popular second hand and vintage store at the organisation’s headquarters in the historic Sipelia Works, a former cutlery factory at Cadman Street, close to the city’s Canal Basin.
There are over 80,000 social enterprises in the UK – businesses which trade to meet a social or environmental purpose and which reinvest the majority of their profits back towards meeting their social mission.
The campaign is organised by Social Enterprise UK, the membership body for social enterprises and supported by the Coop and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.
It shines a spotlight on these businesses which are operating across the economy – delivering goods and services ranging from consumer products to public transport, housing, health and social care.
“We are delighted to be a part of Social Saturday,” said Emmaus Deputy Manager Charley Fedorenko.
“The services we provide both to our companions and also to the many customers who visit us every day are a fine example of working both with the community and thinking about broader issues such as the environment and recycling.
“We believe very firmly that the work we can can change lives for the better, giving people a valuable fresh start through the support we give them within our small but vital community.”
Peter Holbrook CBE, the CEO of Social Enterprise UK, said: “Social enterprises are delivering ground-breaking public services from transport and leisure centres to providing clean energy.
“They are creating equality though business, giving back to the communities they work in and often creating jobs and opportunities for the people and areas that need them most.
“Social Saturday is a chance to put social enterprises on the map. If we are to tackle the urgent challenges we face as a nation and as a global community – from the persistence of poverty and inequality to climate change we urgently need to rethink our economic model.
“Social enterprises show us how we can do business differently and point to what a fairer, more sustainable future can look like.