Invitation to the “Baltic – UK Social Entrepreneurship Forum”

DETAILED PROGRAM CAN BE FOUND HERE.

On the 4th of June, social entrepreneurs and everyone interested is invited to a first time event – international “Baltic – United Kingdom Social Entrepreneurship Forum”, dedicated to the topic of COOPERATION. Establishing partnerships in business is relevant for both new and small, experienced, and large social enterprises, to promote their development on a larger scale, it is especially important during the global pandemic, which is preventing many companies from proper functioning. The Forum will be a great opportunity to gain knowledge, experience, and business-like skills in building business cooperation.

The event consists of three parts – the Forum, workshops, and “house parties” at six Baltic social enterprises. In the first part, from 10.00 a.m. to 1.00 p.m.(EEST), Forum participants will have the opportunity to find out about business partnership trends in social entrepreneurship in United Kingdom and elsewhere, as well as to hear the pitches of the ministries and associations of the Baltic States about the differences in social entrepreneurship and partnership trends in Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia. Five social enterprises will share their experience in building the partnerships and the value of the cooperation: “Barboleta” from Latvia, “Pirmas blynas“ from Lithuania, “Merkuur OÜ” from Estonia, “FRC Group” and “NOW Group” from United Kingdom. Each enterprise represents a distinctive industry and implements various models of cooperation. Forum participants will have the opportunity to ask questions and share their own findings.

In the second part of the Forum, from 2 p.m. to 3.30 p.m.(EEST), everyone is welcomed to participate in four workshops, and together with experts strengthen collaboration and communication skills. The workshops will be dedicated to four topics – successful and productive communication, value proposition of social enterprise, persuasive presentation for investors and long-term partnership establishment. Participation in workshops is available with prior registration, the number of participants is limited.

More information about social enterprises that will share their experience and workshops please find below.

A well-known fact – genuine business contacts are mostly established in the informal parts of events. For this reason, the Forum will conclude with an online networking “house parties” at six Baltic social enterprises. It will be an opportunity to become acquainted with Baltic social entrepreneurs and to acquire new business contacts. The informal part will take place from 3.30 to 4 p.m.(EEST).

The Forum is an online event, and participation is free of charge. In order to receive a link to watch the Forum live, to apply for participation in one of the workshops or informal “house parties” at Baltic social enterprises, please fill in a registration form by 2nd of June: cutt.ly/BalticForum.

The Forum is supported by the British Council Latvia and is one of the closing events of the British Council’s “People to People Cultural Engagement 2016-2021” programme. This programme has been running in the Baltic States since 2016 with the aim of supporting educational, cultural and social entrepreneurship activities that promote social cohesion. The Forum is organized by Social Entrepreneurship Association of Latvia in cooperation with the Estonian Social Enterprise Network, and the Lithuanian Association of Social Enterprises.

The British Council Latvia and Social Entrepreneurship Association of Latvia have been working together for several years on the development of social entrepreneurship in Latvia. During this time, a lot has been achieved – a network of social entrepreneurship ambassadors has been established, the development of new social entrepreneurship ideas has been promoted through various activities, local communities and the wider public have been informed, and cooperation with local authorities and decision-makers has been developed. The Baltic-UK Social Entrepreneurship Forum is the logical conclusion to these years of cooperation. We hope that this forum will create new partnerships and cooperation projects that will not only help local communities, but will also be of interest to the wider public,” says Zane Matesoviča, Head of the British Council Latvia.

More information about the event and detailed program can be found here: sua.lv/forum/.

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Social enterprises that will share their experience

“FRC Group”, UK

“FRC Group” is a 33 year old social enterprise with the mission to ‘End Furniture Poverty’. This is achieved through a range of social enterprise activity -– End Furniture Poverty.org, Furniture Resource Centre, Buckingham Interiors, Bulky Bob’s, Bulky Bob’s for Business and Bulky Bob’s Furniture World. “FRC Group” employs 120 people and has a turnover of £14M. “FRC Group” supplies a range of furniture related products and services to both individuals and organisations.

„Pirmas blynas“, LT

“Pirmas blynas” is a socially conscious pancake restaurant in Vilnius. Delicious pancakes are served by people with disabilities working as waiters and helping in the kitchen. The social enterprise has developed successful cooperation with the local ministry and NGOs.

“Merkuur OÜ”, EST

A mobile workshop goes to different places to help young people discover the amazing world of technology. In mobile classrooms equipped with modern technology and tools, every student, teacher and parent can test their engineering skills, various techniques and tools, and make exciting products. “Merkuur OÜ” develops cooperation with schools.

“Barboleta”, LV

Barboleta aims to support children with developmental, behavioural and emotional difficulties. Barboleta has three fields of action: “Barboleta” method is an interactive balancing tool, nursery school and development centre “Learn to learn”. Barboleta is building cooperation with various enterprises, parents for developing new products and services, as well as with municipality.

Maeve Monaghan, Chief Executive of “NOW Group”, UK

“NOW Group” is an award-winning social enterprise based in Belfast that supports people with learning difficulties and autism into jobs with a future. The organization provide a range of services that support people with barriers and autism to realise their full potential and change their lives for the better. “NOW Group” also operates three successful social enterprise businesses called Loaf Catering, Gauge Impact and JAM Card, the profits from which go back into “NOW Group’s” work.

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Workshops

Impact investment – how to make a perfect pitch for investors? 

Marge Maidla, Founder and CEO at “Limitless Impact Investments”

What is impact investment? Why is it important? How is it evolving in the region? And how to attract impact investors? Various case studies presented by Marge will answer these questions. But what is theory without a practice? You will have a great opportunity to get prepared and participate in a pitching competition. Voting will define the best pitch and the winner will get an opportunity to have a 1:1 meeting with Limitless Impact Investments to introduce their idea further. 

Value proposition – branding simulation for social enterprise

Diāna Ņikitina, branding strategist, mentor to female entrepreneurs

Let’s play a highly realistic hypothetical game about brand building!

We will go step by step through a branding simulation while constructing a functional brand with values, audience, value proposition, personality, graphic design and communications strategy. We will put together a consistent brand in a matter of 1,5h using popular vote and group reasoning. During this masterclass you will get acquainted with all the components to think about branding. You will be able to go home and replicate the process.

Long term relationship – how to nurture a sustainable partnership?

Viktorija Braziunaite, Head at Lithuanian Social Business Association, Auste Cerniauskaite, Founder of “Coolukis”

Solid and long-lasting relationships in business are key for a success. How our values and past events effect our present? What are they key prerequisites for successful long-lasting partnerships? How to overcome challenges and obstacles? What we can learn from our differences and how turn them into strength? These and other aspects will be presented and discussed during the masterclass.

Viktorija will share her experience and other examples of long-term relationship building in social entrepreneurship. In practical work participants will identify a key factors and obstacles for long-term partnership, as well as solutions to overcome those obstacles.

How to start communication and close the deal without failing?

Daina Einberga, international coach, therapist, mentor, Founder and CEO of Ltd “DK Projects”

During this workshop participants will reflect on the nuances of their communication, see their most common mistakes in communicating with different people, and deepen their understanding of problems and their possible solutions through more productive communication. We will work with emphasizing the value of social enterprise in communication with various partners and will prepare a three-step plan to improve communication. A practical training process with examples, identification of common mistakes, recommendations and situation analyses, expert opinion and some tools for more effective achievement of goals in the business environment and also in everyday life.

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The informal part will take place from 3.30 to 4 p.m. More information HERE.