The court had heard evidence from the girl how in prison she came across drugs and women so distressed they were cutting themselves and some attempted suicide. She said “You can hear staff asking for scissors to cut people down” and “in prison you are locked up for long periods of time and there is no time to get to know the staff. Our previous consultations with social enterprises in the North West region also demonstrated that social enterprises wanted support to be delivered through this mechanism.
To complement these initiatives, additional interventions could possibly be developed to increase the capacity of some of the infrastructure organisations within the South East (such as RAISE) to help them provide additional support to emerging social enterprises. Although an audit of social enterprise support provision was carried out by the Plunkett Foundation in 2006, it is important that further audits are delivered in the future, in order to recognise, in detail, the ever-changing changing needs of the region’s social enterprises.
The development of the Inclusive Finance CIC is likely to make a significant contribution towards improving the capacity of CDFI’s to respond to the financial needs of social enterprises. A major mapping exercise was carried out by ECOTEC in 2003, detailing the characteristics of the social enterprise sector; however, the findings from this project are now outdated. Some data is, however, available through the 2004/05 national mapping study of social enterprises, and through annual updates of the national household survey. Market analysis reports are being produced for each sector, and they are due to be complete by the end of 2007. These reports will contain sector specific market information, and will highlight potential growth opportunities for the social economy.