As part of Braemar’s focus on excellence, Trust Manager Paula Baker attended the 2018 Social Enterprise World Forum in Edinburgh, Scotland in September. Key defining characteristics of a social enterprise include re-investing profits for social good, being based on principles of trade rather than aid, and having transparency and accountability of all aspects of the business. As one commentator explained “At the heart of a social enterprise is an innovative business idea as an answer to real issues. It takes a social entrepreneur with a passion for a social issue to build a business on funding alone”.
Paula joined over 1300 attendees from over 40 countries including 85 other fellow Kiwi’s, for the 3-day world class conference. Minister for Social Development, Hon Peeni Henare, addressed the crowd in the opening ceremony which was followed up by waiata form those present. Minister Henare addressed New Zealand’s Government involvement in the sector admitting our government has “created partnerships in Aotaeroa New Zealand to grow social enterprises” followed by the promise “to ensure that the social enterprise movement grows well and strong into the future”. Networking with participants and hearing real life examples from social entrepreneurs from across the globe was a fantastic opportunity to learn new approaches and from the experiences of others and to reflect these principles into the work of the Braemar Charitable Trust going forward.
While in Edinburgh, Paula also took the opportunity to meet with a range of people and organisations within the charitable health sector including the CEO of the Edinburgh Children’s Hospital Charity, the CEO of Volunteering Health Scotland, the Programme Manager-Volunteering for the Scottish Health Council who are part of Healthcare Improvement Scotland, the Foundation Director for the Edinburgh and Lothians Health Foundation and the Director of Women’s and Children’s Associated Services and the Associate Medical Director of the Royal Hospital for Sick Children. Paula also attended a round table networking event facilitated by Volunteering Health Scotland and hosted by the Queen’s Nursing Institute of Scotland. Participants included the Scottish Public Health Network, Volunteer Edinburgh, Marie Curie Hospice, Changing Faces Charitable Trust, Art in Healthcare, Faith in Older People, Volunteering Health Scotland Board of Trustees and the Teapot Trust.
The conference and study tour was valuable opportunity for Paula to learn about the Scottish charitable health experience and share initiatives underway in New Zealand both within the public and private health sectors.