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Social Investment during Covid-19

Here at Community Action Suffolk we are still here to offer support in these strange and rapidly changing times.  It is clear that there will be a significant impact on the VCSE sector and we are committed to providing you with the support you need. 

There is something of an information overload presently and no-one has all the answers so to help you negotiate the quagmire, please take a look at the resources below and remember you can contact me on 07391 419887 sarah.lomasney@communityactionsuffolk.org.uk or follow me on Twitter @socialinvestCAS

Statement from Social Investment Business, Big Issue Invest, Access& Big Society Capital for social impact investors (among others):

  • We are all aware the coronavirus outbreak means this is a very challenging time for all. We know this will include the charities and social enterprises we work with, many of whom work with the most vulnerable people. Our priority above all is to work collectively and with urgency to help where we can.
  • We want to reassure all of the organisations we invest in that we will support you and be as flexible as possible in the coming months. We are actively working together on how we can adapt existing schemes and funds. We are also working with government and other funders to establish new programmes that may provide additional help. We recognise that grants and business support will be at least as important as social investment.

The most important message is:

  • If you have investment and think you may need support or flexibility, please get in touch; we will do our best to help. If you might need investment to help you through difficult trading, please speak to us
  • There is a dedicated regularly updated section on Good Finance:

Monitoring and Evaluation

It is really important that data collection, monitoring and evaluation systems and impact practice aren’t  neglected, and Inspiring Impact have a range of resources on adapting in the current climate to ensure that you can demonstrate the positive impact you are making:

Previous Webinars from Social Enterprise UK:

20 MAY: KEY ISSUES FOR SOCIAL ENTERPRISES IN PUBLIC SERVICE DELIVERY: PROCUREMENT AND CONTRACTS – Social enterprises delivering public services are facing extremely serious challenges due to COVID-19. From drastic changes in the volume and nature of demand, to having to change or even suspend their services, many have had to quickly adapt. The government’s Procurement Policy Notes encouraged all contracting authorities to support suppliers – but what does the guidance mean in practice? And what steps should suppliers take to manage their contractual obligations? Augustus Della-Porta, Partner in the Charity & Social Enterprise Department at Bates Wells, goes into more details.

27 APRIL : SOCIAL INVESTMENT BUSINESS ON NEW FUNDING SCHEME – Nick Temple CEO at the Social Investment Business ran through how the new the Resilience and Recovery Loan Fund, administered by SIB, will work for social enterprises. He was joined by SEUK’s Andrew O’Brien who gave an overview of the current state of government funding for our sector. You can find out more about the fund on the SIB website. Andrew’s slides can be accessed here.

20 APRIL: DIGITAL MARKETING – Steph Bennett, MD of digital agency Battenhall hosted this webinar on digital marketing which gave an overview of digital media channels and building integrated marketing plans. You can view the slides from Steph’s webinar here.

9 APRIL: DIGITAL TOOLS AND WORKING FROM HOME – Digital agency and social enterprise, Reason Digital hosted a webinar looking into the best ways to work remotely, the best platforms to use and how to keep productive.

7 APRIL: THE COVID JOB RETENTION SCHEME & WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW – Paul Seath from the Employment Team at law firm, Bates Wells will delivered a webinar on the latest updates on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. It looked in depth at what employers can claim, what the new guidance means for social enterprises receiving public funds and how the concept of furlough leave works in practice. You can download detailed slides about the Job Retention Scheme here.

1 APRIL: ADAPTING YOUR BUSINESS MODEL – Colin Downie, Sales and Partnership Director at leading social enterprise, WildHearts, delivered a webinar on adapting your business model to best deal with crisis which touched on making the most of furlough and looking at potential new markets at this challenging time. You can also download slides from Colin’s webinar here.

31 MARCH : MENTAL HEALTH AND WORKING FROM HOME – Simon Blake, Chief Executive at Mental Health First Aid England delivered a webinar on mental health support at this time and adjusting to the realities of homeworking. You can access slides from Simon’s presentation here.

26 MARCH: BUSINESS CONTINUITY PLANNING – Outgoing CEO of Belu Water, Karen Lynch gave a candid overview of the impact COVID-19 is having on the business, on staff and on supply chains with a focus on business continuity planning through the crisis. You can download slides from this webinar here.

25 MARCH: FINANCIAL SUPPORT DURING THE PANDEMIC – Ian Workman, Managing Director and Head SME at Barclays looks at the financial support available for social enterprises including more information on the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme

24 MARCH: MANAGING PEOPLE THROUGH THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC CEO of Roots HR CIC, Jan Golding delivered a webinar looking in depth at the HR issues created by the current situation. The webinar covers paying your people, furlough leave and the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, homeworking and the realities of redundancies. You can download the slides from Jan’s webinar here.

18 MARCH: SEUK OVERVIEW WEBINAR – Our Chief Executive, Peter Holbrook and Director of External Affairs, Andrew O’Brien on SEUK’s plans to support our members and the social enterprise movement through the crisis.