SEC AGM 2013

We are planing to hold our next AGM on WednesballoonsPic3day, May 15th at Swaffham Community Centre.

You can find the Centre just past the library on The Camping Ground, Swaffham, PE37 7RB. The cafe will be open for great refreshments served by the Iceni Partnership staff.

From 2.00pm to 5.00pm we are featuring displays of our current projects, including Marham Voices, our Heritage Lottery funded oral history activity. You can also talk to us about the start of our new project, Enterprise Arts, designed to deliver a new gallery and arts space, teaching space and community ICT service from a new building in the town.

We would be delighted to see anyone who wished to volunteer to support our projects, or who might be happy to consider joining the SEC board. Our AGM formally starts at 5.00pm on the 15th.

You can find detaiils of all our activities on our home page here.

Check our Marham Voices here.

We are planning to run a community bus service betweeen Marham and Swaffham on the day, to make our event easier to get to from the village. Watch this space for further details…

Marham Voices – listening to stories

listeningimage2-mSandringham Enterprise is delighted to have been generously awarded a substantial sum of money from the Heritage Lottery Fund – with the generous support of Cambridge University and its Cambridge Community Heritage team – to undertake an oral history and historic record project for Marham and its surrounding area.

Marham Voices project will last about a year and we will create a web based oral archive of people’s stories about our area, as well as producing a history of the community, concentrating on the changes in our landscape across the 19th and 20th Centuries.

We will, in the coming Spring of 2013, be holding open public events to encourage you to tell your story and get involved in our project. Our volunteers, trained in the collection of oral history, will be able to support you through the process.

When we receive permission from our generous funder, the Heritage Lottery Fund, we will be building out and launching a Marham Voices web site – here you will find all the details about the project, how to join in and the programme of activities we’ll plan with you.

In the meantime, if you wish to express an interest in taking part in Marham Voices you can email the team at mystory (@) marhamvoices.org – or use the contact us form on the Sandringham Enterprise web pages here.

We’d love to hear from you and hear your voice too!

Open Learning – online education

learningPic555We are quietly persevering with the coding of our secLEARNING web pages, which when we release them, will offer a range of information and advice about learning in West Norfolk in all its shades and colours.

As we labour in the background the world of open online learning proceeds to change and develop – with some astounding free learning opportunities available for everyone.

Limited only by your imagination, the websites below offer you access to the thinking and training opportunities of some great institutions. If a member of our community wants to study art, robotics, electronics or just brush up on Microsoft Office Suite skills then you can find an opportunity to learn here…

Coursera.org

The pages of this web site offer a collection of supported web learning that we think is frankly outstanding. Although heavily U.S. biased, the subjects and their content on offer provide a first class education, without the need to travel.

Alison.com

This Irish based initiative is more skills and training based – offering access to online courses and information that are designed to help those who subscribe to increase their employability.

Set the imagination free – sign up for a course and see how it works for you.

You can use our contact us page to tell us about your experiences. We’d love to hear about them.

Power Search with Google

magnifyingLensPic

A community course of six, fifty minute lessons is being offered by Google online in July 2012. You can register from June 26th to July 16th.

See more here…

Freely accessible after registration, your group can improve its Google search skills by undertaking the free courses, with your certificate arriving by email when you have completed the course.

Finding information on the internet is a key skill for a community organisation these days, whether looking for informaton about funding, local charities or local history, for example.

These tutorials, complete with interactive examples to work with, can help you become a power searcher. Get more from the web for your community.

You can find the Google power searching tutorial access page here.

The SEC home page of our main website is here.

secBEANS bookshop now online

booksandbusinessPicThe secBEANS network have just published the pages of their online bookshop – beansBOOKS.

This is a great resource for getting information, ideas and seeing how others run their enterprise ideas. Every purchase you make from the bookshop sends a small amount to support SEC as a community charity too.

Have a look at the beansBOOKS pages. There are sections for the female entrepreneur, marketing and social media for all sorts of enterprises, as well as a section on how social business can change communities.

Buy with confidence from a book distributor you can trust – Amazon, and help your local community charity SEC…and get your enterprise idea in gear too!

The GrandParent factor

grandparentsPicSome of out team were at a conference recently, listening to a very lively speaker from The Grandparents Association.

This UK charity specifically supports the older members of family groups and their concerns, offering information and advice across a number of themes – childcare, finance and benefits and the role of the grandparent in general.

This set us thinking about the work of grandparents and the care of children, in even the most well organised and supported communities.

In these days of community outreach by many organisations, SureStart, the local authority and welfare support in general – the grandparent can often, as a group in society, still provide front line care for young children, advice to younger parents and siblings – as well as coping with their own pressures around housing, health and finance.

We really like the web site for the Grandparents Association and you can find more information and support from it here.

Next time you see them, thank the grandparents – they do a lot we know – why not get them a membership subscription for Christmas too?

The School of Volunteering

evSchoolButtonThere is a new free online school for those involved in volunteering.

A product of a European Union initiative the courses are available to both volunteers and to professionals working in organisations supporting volunteers.

The European Volunteering School web site has some nice graphics to point you in the right direction (click the blue people on the site to find out more!).

Courses are all free, accessed online and participant groups are limited to sixty students, so register quickly.

You can see the range of subjects on offer, how to apply and an introduction to free e-learning at the school here.

Courses on offer range from introduction to volunteering, project management, communication and marketing for volunteers and youth initiatives.

Being a better volunteer?

Franchising a social business

copyPic4The Social Enterprise Coalition have just published a manual to help charities and social businesses replicate or franchise their business operations.

Franchising is most often a process associated with fast food outlets or profit maximisation, but this interesting hybrid manual from SEC helps to show social businesses how they can prepare and deliver, in partnership with others, a replicatable service, brand or organisational ethos in another community or geographical area.

You can download the Social Franchising manual here.

Here at Sandringham Enterprise, as a social enterprise ourselves, we are always interested in replicatable social business ideas and in how to help others deploy them.

As a development resource in our own right we have the skills available to help other organisations to deliver their repeatable business model in the not for profit sector. If we can help, let us know.

The SEC document contains the ten steps to readiness, some case studies for review and a template for a social franchising agreement.

A good starting point if you have a social enterprise you can duplicate in the service of others.

MyDonate – a new charity service from British Telecom

myDonateLogoTypeBT have just launched MyDonate, a new service which will enable charities to more efficiently collect donations.

Online giving is not new, but the difference is that BT will, at the moment, make no charge for its service, with the giver only paying the card charges for his or her transfer to the charity. (BT says absorbing the cost of the scheme is part of its existing commitment to charitable support).

This new service is designed for registered UK charities and BT has collaborated with major charities in the UK, such as Cancer Research and the NSPCC to develop its offer.

This scheme compares favourably with JustGiving for example. This popular online service for charities charges the charity £15 a month and take 5% of your money in administration charges. The BT scheme means that all your donation goes to the charity.

If your charity has another online service for donations we think this new scheme from BT is worthy of your attention.

If you are a newly registered charity looking to explore the issues of online donations, then check out the MyDonate page from British Telecom.

Is change happening in our sector?

Could you be our Company Secretary?

typingPic44Sandringham Enterprise Centre Limited, our Charitable Company, specifically formed to manage the Sandringham Centre, develop support and training for our local voluntary groups and encourage the start up of community business – is looking for someone to act as our Hon. Secretary.

The volunteer role is interesting and varied, supporting and developing our social business systems, helping the main board and developing training opportunities for both the board and volunteers.

You will have the chance to help create some unique chances for volunteering, services and employment in our community.

As a family friendly, learning organisation you’ll be able to develop your experience and skills in charity governance and enterprise creation too.

You can read more about the post on our Volunteers page on the main centre website here.

You can have an informal chat with our Chair, Colin Mason or contact Rita Broomfield too, using the contactd details on the Volunteer page.

We look forward to welcoming you to our charitable company at an exciting time in its development.

The Board of The Sandringham Enterprise Centre Limited.