Social entrepreneurs cash-in on bank innovation project

Pauline Grice
Pauline Grice
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Two entrepreneurs from Sheffield have graduated from a pioneering programme that aims to boost the number of innovative social enterprises in the region and another five from the region have joined the Lloyds Bank-backed initiative.

Sheila McGill and Richard Belbin each got a start-up grant worth £4,000 and comprehensive support, including business mentoring after securing places on the Lloyds Bank Social Entrepreneurs Programme. Sheila McGill’s enterprise – Stop Before You Start (Smoking) – supplies a ready-made education package for UK schools which aims to prevent the 99 per cent of 11-year-olds who don’t smoke from starting.

Emma Wilson

Emma Wilson

Meanwhile, Richard Belbin’s Peoples Republic CIC runs workshops in deprived communities, designed to improve health, wellbeing and personal skills.

After the success of the pilot programme, five budding social entrepreneurs from Sheffield, Doncaster and Rotherham have now joined the scheme.

Helen Batt from Sheffield is behind River Stewardship, a business that aims to carry out riverside management work and community projects involving local volunteers.

Stephanie Hryschko’s Sheffield-based business, Kivo-ebiz, aims to set up a service selling goods over the internet for the local community and provide training on buying and selling online.

Craig Gamble Pugh, also from Sheffield, is setting up circus arts charity Green Top Circus to provide education as well as entertainment for 10,000 children and young people each year

Emma Wilson, from Doncaster, is launching Artistic Spectrum to provide art therapy to people with autism, organise regional and national exhibitions of art by autistic people and provide training and consultancy support services.

Pauline Grice, from Rotherham, is establishing Towards Internet Trading to introduce people aged 14 to 30 to trading on the internet as a route into self-employment. Graham Lindsay, from Lloyds Bank, said: “It is great to see the progress made by our first cohort of Lloyds Bank Social Entrepreneurs.”