SOCIAL ENTERPRISE NEWS
Our first Member Spotlight of 2023 is with Be-inn Unity, a social enterprise based in East Kilbride working to reduce the stigma associated with mental health. We caught up with director Danny Gemmell, to find out more about the work they do, plans for the new year and tips for other entrepreneurs.
What’s your social and/or environmental mission?
We exist to inspire and educate communities so that individuals are empowered to thrive. Our vision is to live in a world where there is no social stigma associated with mental health and every individual has a meaningful relationship in their community that promotes wellbeing.
How do you do it?
We collaborate with a range of communities delivering initiatives that promote wellbeing. This includes nationally regulated mental health qualifications to senior phase pupils, third sector organisations, the public sector and private sector. We also host The Veteran ERV, a mental health and suicide prevention peer support group for veterans.
What’s your personal motivation for being a social entrepreneur?
I’ve had personal challenges with my own mental health and when I was going through some dark days, I was unable to reach out for help. We want to change the narrative and provide opportunities for community members to be connected and confident to “Reach In” to open those conversations and support each other.
What are your current projects?
Our Dare to Venture programme provides opportunities for individuals and communities to connect with nature, providing all essential equipment to remove financial barriers. We have also recently employed a Community and Relationships Mentor in Larbert High School, putting a focus on relationships with young people and initiatives that support wellbeing.
What exciting things do you have coming up?
We are soon announcing some Dare to Venture days for community members to sign up to and go hillwalking. These days will be open to everyone and be led by veterans who will share some navigation and survival tips!
Who do you want to work with more?
We are keen to work with all communities, especially young people in senior phase years at school. We want to continue providing the space for them to understand mental health on a deeper level and set up peer support systems in their schools and wider communities.
What’s your biggest challenge?
We have a small team, so can be spread thin at times. We will soon be recruiting for more members to join our team though, and help us to work towards our vision!
What top tips would you give to other social enterprises?
Our society needs change, and your ideas will make it happen. Choose courage over comfort and step into the unknown. It may feel lonely and wild, but you will be surprised to see so many people walking beside you.
For more information, please visit Be-inn Unity’s website or contact them at email@example.com. Make sure to follow them on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram to keep updated with their work.
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