Social Firms England takes on mantle of Social Firms UK
After consultation with members, the Board of Social Firms UK decided that at the end of March 2015, Social Firms UK will be retired and will be replaced with Social Firms England on 1st April 2015 for SFUK members in England. We believe that this is a really exciting move for the social firms sector, and provides the opportunity for a new and improved shape for social firm support and lobbying at local and national level.
SFUK members have had the opportunity to make their views known over several surveys and discussions over the past year. We have taken all of these views into account in making the changes – and we are quite excited about the new potential that they bring. It has given us the opportunity to review exactly what members need and value from their support body.
We are offering two bands of membership and membership benefits both for employment and employability social firms, and for supporters.
- Silver Membership is for those who like a costed and defined package with a clear range-of-value for money benefits.
- Bronze membership is free, for those who just want to keep in touch or want to purchase additional member benefits tailored to their own needs.
Second, we are giving members the choice of whether to be members of the company or not. Getting involved in governance is not everyone’s cup of tea, so we are leaving it to you to decide to be a member of the company in addition to being a member that receives benefits.
What about UK-wide working?
We have been discussing the issues with Social Firms Scotland, Social Firms Wales and Social Enterprise NI over the past few years. With social enterprise matters being almost entirely devolved to the devolved nations, we have recognised it has become increasingly redundant to have a parallel UK wide membership body for social firms.
Social Firms England, Social Firms Wales, Social Firms Scotland and Social Enterprise NI will work together to promote the social firms model under the new banner of Social Firms Four Nations. This will not be a constituted body, but rather a mechanism for the four existing constituted bodies to operate in solidarity and to showcase the highlights of the movement across all four nations. We will develop a website and brand together over the next few months.
For all four organisations, this fresh format takes proper account of changed national realities and potential, presents new opportunities to work together collaboratively, and improves the leverage of our joint expertise for the good of the sector.
What about the Resources on the Social Firms UK website?
Social Firms England inherits all the intellectual property and resources from Social Firms UK.
Gradually over the next few months, we will be moving the resources and publications over to this website. We will be able to make it easier for you to find and download the information that you need.