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Social enterprises speed network their way to success

Date 18 Dec 2007
Author bdaily.info
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Community groups from across Northumberland were recently given the benefits of business wisdom. Social Enterprise Northumberland (SEN) brought together voluntary groups and business mentors at their first Social Enterprise Day, held at Longhirst Hall.

'Speed Networking' was one of the activities during the day, which provided the 22 voluntary and community groups in the county with the opportunity to network with experienced and successful entrepreneurs from across the county.

The event mirrored the format of speed dating, in which SEN teamed up with REACH - an organisation that provides retired entrepreneurs and managers as volunteer business mentors, and other Northumberland Business Forum members to provide three minutes of business growth advice to various social enterprises. SEN hope that this will develop into a longer term relationship with the entrepreneurs giving continued business support and advice to the social enterprises.

Tony Kirsop, manager of Social Enterprise Northumberland, said: "The day was a great success - it was fantastic to see so many groups and individuals taking time out of their busy schedules to be involved in 'speed networking'. The feedback we received from attendees was that it proved to be a valuable source of advice, contacts and support.

Dee Stephenson, Enterprise Manager for Northumberland Strategic Partnership, said: "It is vital that entrepreneurs can seek advice and support from the local business community which further develops their business. "This event provided the entrepreneurs with a chance to share their worries, problems and challenges with experienced businessmen and women and use it as a springboard to future success."

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