Wow – is all I can say at the minute! The Big Venture Challenge has kicked off for us with a bang. We have been given a fantastic ‘dream team’ of three key individuals who will be championing RunAClub, supporting us through the next 12 months to scale RunAClub up and bring in the investors and partners in the process. They really get stuck into the nitty gritty, are huge fans of RunAClub and can really visualise the future potential.
We have been successful in the Big Venture Challenge and this is exciting for us as we have such an extraordinary amount of interest in RunAClub, but need to increase our team and make some new additions to the technology to take on some major contracts and also reflect the sporting sector’s needs. The BVC platform will leverage investment and we are already talking to interested parties. It’s important that I take the time here to explain that it is extremely important to us that we bring on socially minded investors – it truly is the crux of everything we do. We are scrutinising them as much as they scrutinise us.
I love ‘Change’! There, I’ve said it out loud. To be more specific it’s positive change that I like so much. Where there is potential for growth, in an organisation and in the team within it I think it’s an opportunity for everyone to ensure we continue to develop ourselves and our organisations. Of course sometimes that change can include shrinkage in an organisation or a team, and that has been exceptionally hard for the Public and Third Sector. It’s very tough for individuals with families to look after, to re-invent themselves and it’s not always a positive outcome for them.
I have been contemplating social enterprises and the age of social entrepreneurs this week. I have read some interesting snippets and articles discussing the need for support for young people and social enterprise and it’s certainly a huge shift in our culture to be encouraging young people to not only run their own businesses, but to run social businesses.
Last week I took part in a Guardian social enterprise discussion online. The subject was women and social enterprise and the lack of women leaders in this sector. Honestly, I don’t think it has ever crossed my mind that I am in a ‘minority’ or seen myself as any different to any new male social enterprise leadership position. I think it’s tough no matter what the gender, to raise the profile of a social enterprise and get start up funding.
I always find it a little tricky that everything slows down at this time of year – as it does in August – we are so focused on getting our clubs on board via the supporting organisations.
I thought you might find it interesting to hear we have a fantastic array of clubs and groups – from boxing, youth, kayaking, community funding club, music, cricket and football. A really interesting mix! As the numbers build we will let you know where we have got to and if there is a dominant type of club.
I thought I would introduce you to one of our clubs here today via our mini case studies pulled together by Alex. But before I do so, I just want to say we are very pleased to welcome Sutton and Richmond voluntary sector networks on board. We hope, as a group of seven voluntary networks, more will follow before too long.