By Columba O’Hare
A Dragons Den event like no other, from honey bees to extra cash prizes for the shortlisted finalists. A day to remember for all those that took part.
Sincere thanks and gratitude go to the people who supported the Social Enterprise NI event and made it such a success. Congratulations to all the shortlisted finalists, namely;
The Advantage Foundation
Clanrye Group / Grow Project
CAN (Compass Advocacy Network)
Fringe Coffee Co. / Youth with a Mission NI Ltd
The Dragons Den was once again sponsored by Community Finance Ireland (CFI), represented by Phelim Sharvin – Head of Community Finance NI, an organisation that was founded on building social value & impact into its business model. This was the 10th year in a row of their sponsorship with the event becoming a highlight of the social enterprise calendar.
The 1st Prize of £1500 provided by CFI was presented to CAN (Compass Advocacy Network), Ballymoney
An additional 2nd prize for £500, kindly donated by Oriel Developments Ltd was awarded to Clanrye / Grow Project, Newry
We were delighted that Newry & Mourne Co-operative and Enterprise Agency, were so impressed by all presentations that they provided £250 to each of the remaining finalists, namely Fringe Coffee Co, Newry, The Advantage Foundation, Belfast and Moneydarragh Hub, Newry.
The event was hosted by Stephen McClelland, Senior Social Enterprise Executive with the Enterprise Agency, and Social Enterprise NI would like to put on record our thanks for all the support in making this event such a success. Stephen has a wealth of knowledge of the sector and his contribution was greatly appreciated.
Additionally, a special word of thanks to Fringe Coffee Co – who not only kept everyone caffeinated but also brought their own batch of cookies.
Whilst the judges deliberated over their decision, delegates heard from Rosemary Deans, Centred Soul, Newry, a former winner, who explained what a difference winning £1500 made in helping her to grow her social enterprise.
Watch out for future pitching events and take the opportunity to join the list of winners with £1500 available to help support your organisation.
To keep in touch with happenings in the social enterprise sector please visit our website and subscribe to our newsletter www.socialenterpriseni.org