Media Release: Winners of Social Enterprise Awards Scotland 2015 announced



Contact: Duncan Thorp 07501 221 581

SOCIAL Enterprise Scotland announced the winners of the Social Enterprise Awards Scotland 2015, at a celebration awards ceremony in The Scottish Parliament last night.

Social Enterprise of the Year is COPE Ltd from Shetland. The One to Watch award goes to EuroBiotix CIC and the Social Enterprise Champion goes to Isobel Grigor of Calman Trust in The Highlands (winner biographies etc. in Notes below, photo of COPE Ltd attached).

Scotland’s annual awards for innovation and success in social enterprise showcase how social enterprises are improving Scotland’s economy and society. 2015 also marks the ten-year anniversary of Social Enterprise Scotland, as well as the year of the first ever Social Enterprise Census Scotland, demonstrating a robust and growing business community.

Fraser Kelly, chief executive, Social Enterprise Scotland, said:

“The Social Enterprise Awards Scotland 2015 is a unique opportunity for social enterprises of all types to step up and be counted and show us how they’re changing Scotland.

“The diversity and quality of applications this year has been fantastic, congratulations to the winners and to everyone who was commended and shortlisted. Social enterprise is the future of business in Scotland, as a more sustainable and progressive way to delivering essential goods and services for everyone.”

John Swinney MSP, Deputy First Minster, The Scottish Government, said:

“Social enterprises make a huge impact right across Scotland – tackling social problems and strengthening communities. They help create employment and skills opportunities, improve public services and support some of our hardest to reach individuals.

“I am very happy, therefore, to celebrate the success of this year’s Social Enterprise Scotland award winners and to congratulate them on their substantial achievements.”

Ingrid Webb, chief executive, COPE Ltd, Social Enterprise of the Year 2015, said:

“We are delighted to have won Social Enterprise of the Year at the Social Enterprise Awards Scotland 2015. This award puts Shetland firmly on the social enterprise map. The award will help towards our growth and development over the coming months and years and is recognition of the hard work of all our staff and partners.”

To request a social enterprise feature of any length for print, for further information or to arrange an interview about the awards, please contact Duncan Thorp on 07501 221 581 or Please Tweet using #SocEntAwards2015

Social Enterprise Scotland is The Voice of Social Enterprise – uniting social enterprises and their supporters into a strong campaigning force. We’re your gateway to Scotland’s social enterprise community. We’re an independent, Scottish, membership-led organisation, built and controlled by social enterprises. We’re the first point of contact for the media and public and promote a positive vision for social enterprise.



1. See all the shortlisted candidates here. The complete list of 2015 winners:

Social Enterprise of the Year


One to Watch

EuroBiotix CIC

Prove It: Social Impact

Cre8te Opportunities Limited

Buy Social: Market Builder

Strathclyde Partnership for Transport

(Highly Commended

Highlands and Islands Enterprise)

Inspiring Youth Social Enterprise

Arkleston Primary School

Social Enterprise Champion

Isobel Grigor (Calman Trust)

2. Biographies and reasons for winning:

Category 1 – Social Enterprise of the Year Scotland 2015 – COPE LTD

COPE Ltd is a well-established and successful social enterprise and social firm that has been operating in Shetland and Orkney for 16 years with a turnover of over £1 million. It has a strong social purpose supporting the development of employment skills for people with learning disabilities. COPE believes that everyone regardless of their disability, should have the opportunity to work if they so wish. Given the right conditions, all adults have the potential to contribute to our local economy and in doing so will learn to value themselves and others.

Why did they win?

Business focused but with a commitment to putting the individual at the heart of all decisions

High quality products

Clarity in of vision and strategic direction

Excellent leadership and management of the organisation

Tangible social impact

Evidence of innovation, particularly the decision to rebrand

Improved sustainability

Category 2 – One to Watch – EUROBIOTIX CIC

EuroBiotix UK CIC aim to make an alternative medical treatment, called faecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) more widely available in Scotland and the rest of the United Kingdom. EuroBiotix UK is working towards providing solution to a growing problem in light of an aging population. EuroBiotix CIC has the potential to make a massive impact in the healthcare sector, and aligns itself with the objectives outlined in the NHS ‘A Route Map to the 2020 Vision for Health and Social Care’ document. The EuroBiotix CIC solution would be the first of its kind in the United Kingdom, and the business model predicts that they will provide sustainable community benefit year after year.

Why did they win?

Clarity of vision and direction

Focus on a medical intervention with potential to achieve significant change in healthcare provision

Creativity and innovation in design and implementation of services

Excellence in impact, design and potential for growth

Category 3 – Social Impact – CRE8TE OPPORTUNITIES LTD

Based in the Craigmillar area in South East Edinburgh, Cre8te has specialised in nurturing enterprise in a very difficult neighbourhood – where worklessness is endemic and there is intense social and economic deprivation. We have also focussed our attention on under-represented groups, including support for long term unemployed, individuals with mental health issues and addictions, females and Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) entrepreneurs.

Why did they win?

Clearly set out mission and objectives

Genuine example of community led economic and social impact

Diversity of activities established as part of a long term growth plan

SROI Evaluation of Craigmillar Incubator Units of £13.26

Clear evidence of impact in Craigmillar but also on wider community


Nominated by Ready for Business Strathclyde Partnership for Transport (SPT) are a public body, based in Glasgow, who plan and coordinate regional transport in the Strathclyde area of Scotland. They were established as a Regional Transport Partnership with a to deliver and co-ordinate transport solutions which were cross-boundary, multi-modal and partnership focused. Using the PSP model, SPT have started to design socially necessary Demand Responsive Transport (DRT) services with pilot projects being delivered through Community Transport Operators. These services are available to the public and also provide an accessible alternative to mainstream transport for people with disabilities or mobility difficulties.

Why did they win?

Clear evidence of commitment to partnership and co-planning of service design

Articulation of the steps taken to improve the community transport infrastructure

Overcoming significant cultural and organisational challenges

Evidence of improved organisational commitment to developing social enterprise as a business model

Category 10 – Inspiring Youth – ARKELSTON PRIMARY SCHOOL

Following the success of another business venture, the pupils of Arkleston suggested starting up a Nail Bar which would be offered to pupils in school and residents and their families at Renfrew Care Home. They embarked upon a venture, preparing a business plan and presenting to businessmen and women in Renfrewshire’s Dragon’s Den in June 2014.  They were successfully awarded with £400 to invest in the business. The current Primary 7s have all been involved in the running of the business throughout the year and have involved beauticians from Salon Services to train all pupils in hand massage and nail art. They have taken these skills to the care home, offering both services to all residents and their families.

Why did they win?

A clear understanding of business principles

A clear social mission

Almost entirely led by the pupils involved, particularly in key decision making

Category 11 – Social Enterprise Champion – ISOBEL GRIGOR

In 1998 Isobel Grigor formed Calman Trust, to deliver supported housing in Invergordon for four young people. She continues to lead the organisation, which now offers support and training via social enterprise, working annually with 450+ young people in Highland, a participant in the Inspiring Scotland portfolio, focused on ‘real and lasting change’. Isobel has demonstrated an ability to produce something visionary from nothing, fitting the times, in a manner that has continued throughout her leading of the organisation. The resilience she has shown, the ability to keep going through challenge, provides a model that inspires the organisation: it also gives a touching point for young people coming through Calman, as Isobel communicates a belief in young people’s ability and so provides encouragement in a manner that is palpably authentic.

Why did they win?

Isobel represents the highest of standards in everything that she does

She inspires and empowers others to achieve

Demonstrates a commitment to business and entrepreneurship

Shows unstinting enterprising spirit and drive

Provides vision within the organisation and the wider social enterprise sector

Displays courage and decision making and delivering tough choices

3. What is Social Enterprise? Social enterprise is a dynamic and inspiring way of doing business. Social enterprises are innovative, independent businesses that exist specifically for social and/or environmental purposes. Read more, here.

4. What examples are there? Diverse examples include: The Big Issue, The Wise Group, Divine Chocolate, Cornerstone, Kibble Education and Care Centre, Edinburgh Bicycle Co-op, Glasgow Housing Association, Isle of Eigg Heritage Trust, Link Group Ltd, the Eden Project in Cornwall, Capital Credit Union, The Grameen Foundation, Mondragon Corporation in the Basque Country and the Homeless World Cup.

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SES contact details…

Contact: Duncan Thorp
Phone: 07501221581