ESSENCE and The Chamber, Special Event, 10th October

It sounds like the title of a Harry Potter book but it’s our local social enterprise and co-operative network making the really positive move to come under the Exeter Chamber of Commerce. We’re delighted! It’s great news to have the marketing and administration clout of The Chamber and members benefit from extra networking opportunities, more events and marketing opportunities to other Chamber members.

There’s a special celebratory event on Thursday 10th October, 6pm – 8pm. For more details, click here


Your Idea Starts Here – Lloyds funding School for Social Entrepreneurs

Due to a recent partnership with SSE and Big Lottery Fund, the School for Social Entrepreneurs will be running the Lloyds Banking Group Social Entrepreneurs Programme in Plymouth as well as Bristol this year. It is now open for applications. Closing date is 2nd April 2013. There are open days in both locations. For a list of dates, click here

There is lots of information about the course on the website. All applications are made through the website, but if anyone has any queries or questions, please feel free to contact



The Energy Marketplace Event, 19 March, Exeter

19 March 2013, 9am-4pm Westpoint, Exeter
Established as the largest event of its kind in the region, where customers can come and find out more about what’s on offer. It brings together some 100 expert companies providing the full range of renewable and energy efficient technologies with expert seminars covering all you need to know about choosing the right solution for you – and how to earn and save money from renewable energy.

Whether you are a farmer or landowner, a tourism business, part of the construction sector, a community group, responsible for public buildings and land – or just thinking about what to do in your own home – this is the event for you.

Delegate tickets are available from £15. To book, click here


Mind Your Own Business

We are delighted to be collaborating with The Community Council of Devon to support this event on the 17th July at their premises at Matford Business Park. This Free event, which is part of their Women Do Business programme will provide a unique networking and training workshop to help women entrepreneurs. Mind Your Own Business flyer and booking form 17 06 12

The Fruit Tree for Business – one year on!

Before we knew what had happened a year of trading as the Fruit Tree Partnership came and went.  We wanted to reflect on what we’ve done and in particular whether being a co-op, albeit a rather small one, has shaped the work that we’ve done and the way that we’ve done it.  To celebrate and mark the year in a small way we have produced a simple report to share with our clients and friends or indeed, anyone who is interested and can make time to read it.

The Fruit Tree One Year On

The Social Enterprise Europe Erasmus Project

Social Enterprise Europe Erasmus Project is a project that enables people who are setting up their social enterprise to gain experience by doing placements with more experienced owners and managers in another European country.  Social Enterprises in the UK can receive free placements from talented people from all over the EU from one to six months and social entrepreneurs from the UK can be placed in a country of their choice. Continue reading “The Social Enterprise Europe Erasmus Project”

SoberLink’s Return on Investment – SROI

And another Exeter Social Enterprise makes the Guardian News today

Exeter based SoberLink features with an article on their experience of undertaking a Social Return on Investment (SROI) evaluation. SoberLink offers a recovery mentoring service for alcoholics at the end of detoxification and statutory treatment services in Exeter and East Devon.  To find out more about their experience check out their website.


Launch of Women Forward, new co-operative for mid Devon


Womenforward co-operative founders with Town Mayor, Launch event, March 2012
Womenforward co-operative founders with Town Mayor, Launch event, March 2012

Last month saw the successful launch of a new business network for women in Mid- Devon.

Women Forward is a co-operative of women who are intending to start up their own business or who are already trading locally.

It provides opportunities for training, networking, cross trading and joint marketing.

At its launch Mayor, Neal Davey welcomed this innovative project supporting business women across Mid-Devon. Over wine and canapés more than 30 women discussed their ideas for starting and developing a wide variety of businesses in these challenging economic times. Continue reading “Launch of Women Forward, new co-operative for mid Devon”