Haslingden based Charity, Agapao International, has been awarded the Social Enterprise Mark, which identifies them as trading for social and environmental purposes.
The Social Enterprise Mark is the brand for social enterprises and was launched 1st February, 2010. The Mark identifies businesses which meet defined criteria for social enterprise, and consumers will recognise that businesses displaying the Mark are trading to benefit people and planet.
Agapao joins other ethical businesses that have been recognised by being awarded the Mark such as the Eden Project, Hill Holt Wood, Bristol Wood Recycling Project and the Co-operative Group South & West. The Social Enterprise Mark builds off the pilot run by RISE, the voice for South West social enterprise.
Government data estimates that there are 62,000 social enterprises across the UK, contributing £24 billion to the economy and employing around 800,000 people.
Recent research found that social enterprises are twice as confident of growth compared to typical small to medium enterprises (SMEs), with 48% of social enterprises saying they are positive about the future as opposed to just 24% of SMEs (The Social Enterprise Coalition’s State of Social Enterprise Survey 2009).
Social enterprises are working to make a difference across the UK and beyond, but not enough people know what they are or how they work. The Social Enterprise Mark aims to raise awareness of what social enterprises do in order to get more people to buy from, engage with, start up and work for social enterprises.
Agapao was recently recognised as one of the top five Social Enterprises in Lancashire by the Social Enterprise Lancashire Network (SELNET) and constantly strives to look for innovative ways to maintain financial stability and sustainability.
Agapao works globally to empower individuals and communities in developing countries through training, support and the provision of Community Impact Kits. The ‘CIK’ start allows people to become self-sufficient and less reliant on international aid, as the items provide the opportunity for people to start their own income generating projects. The Charity also offers people the chance to share their skills on an ‘Impact Holiday’ which further develops the communities and individuals visited.
Louise Chicot, CEO of Agapao International said, “We’re really proud to have been awarded the Social Enterprise Mark. Agapao is absolutely committed to supporting sustainable businesses and consequently helping local communities to thrive and prosper, both here in the UK and in developing countries”.
Lucy Findlay champion from the Social Enterprise Mark Company (manager of the Mark) advised: “We are delighted to award the prestigious Social Enterprise Mark to Agapao International. Social enterprises come in all shapes and forms so it's great to see a vital, local Charity understanding the importance of being part of the wider social enterprise brand”
For more information about Agapao please click here
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