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News - 12 March 2010

Hove charity gains social enterprise award

Sussex Central YMCA has been awarded the Social Enterprise Mark, which identifies it as an organisation trading for social and environmental purposes.

The Hove based charity has achieved this recognition through its charity shop and reuse operations, which divert around 25,000 items of furniture, electrical and clothing away from landfill each year.

The organisation will additionally be offering NVQ training and paid employment, via the Future Jobs Fund, to 168 long-term unemployed young people over the next 18 months.

The Social Enterprise Mark is the brand for social enterprises and was launched 1st February, 2010. The Mark identifies businesses that meet defined criteria for social enterprise. Consumers will grow to recognise that businesses displaying the Mark are trading to benefit people and the planet.

Sussex Central YMCA joins other ethical businesses that have been recognised by being awarded the Mark such as the Eden Project in Cornwall and the Co-operative Group.

Social enterprises are working to make a difference across the UK and beyond, but not enough people know what they are or how they work. The Social Enterprise Mark aims to raise awareness of what social enterprises do in order to get more people to buy from, engage with, start up and work for social enterprises.

John Shepherd, Head of Corporate & Commercial Services for the YMCA said, “We’re really proud to have been awarded the Social Enterprise Mark. We are absolutely committed to supporting sustainable businesses and consequently helping local communities to thrive and prosper”.

Lucy Findlay from the Social Enterprise Mark Company (manager of the Mark) advised: “We are delighted to award the prestigious Social Enterprise Mark to Sussex Central YMCA. Social enterprises come in all shapes and forms so it's great to see a vital, local charity understanding the importance of being part of the wider social enterprise brand”

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