Social Enterprise Spotlight – BE United

Posted: 16 August 2022, in News

Our newest Social Enterprise Spotlight is Emma Picken from BE United. 

BE United recognises the need for greater commitment to diversity and inclusion in not only the arts and culture sector in Scotland but also the broader socio-economic institutions.

Contact Emma on

What’s your social and/or environmental mission?

We aim to provide a platform/voice for Scotland’s Black African & Caribbean community.

How do you do it? (client group, practical daily work, customers etc)

We use arts as the medium. We create training and development opportunity for creatives, host events to showcase and develop talent, build partnerships and collaborations to increase employment within the arts and screen sector.

What’s your personal motivation for being a social entrepreneur?

I want to shake up old ways of doing things and see more people who don’t look like me working and thriving in my sector and others.

What are your current projects?

We are currently working on 3 shows that will take place at this years Edinburgh Fringe. We are showcasing the best black musicians in Scotland over 3 nights. Using music as a medium to share stories and give artists a platform to express themselves, as part of Scotland’s year of the stories.

If you are in Edinburgh at the Fringe, our 3 shows are a MUST! The talent we have programmed is incredible and we guarantee you will be blown away by it.

BE United Presents: Live @ Fringe

18th & 19th August @ Fruitmarket

20th August @ Biscuit Factory

Tickets are available on Eventbrite.

What exciting things do you have coming up?

We are building our trading arm, which works within film and tv specifically. We cast extras onto productions and source trainees to crew on productions. We are making huge impact on the Scottish Screen sector and we will continue to do so. Check out a recent feature here Championing Diversity in Scotland’s film and TV industry with BE United | Screen Scotland.

Who do you want to work with more?

More arts organisations and incoming productions to Scotland.

What’s your biggest challenge?

Capacity, we are a small but mighty team. We are growing and I know it will change, right now I would love to have a bigger team.

What top tips would you give to other social enterprises?

Don’t look for the glitz and the glam and the accolades. What you do in private you are rewarded in public for. Put in the work – you’ll get there.

Find out more about BE United:

Website | Instagram | Facebook | LinkedIn