The Bshirt has been named as a finalist in the prestigious UK Social Enterprise Awards, which recognise businesses that are transforming communities and tackling climate change.
The Bshirt has been shortlisted for the UK Social Enterprise Awards, recognising it as one of the UK’s most effective social enterprises.
The Bshirt based in Devon England is a finalist in the Consumer Facing Social Enterprise of the Year category. It is a slow fashion maternity brand dedicated to reducing clothing waste and empowering mums to breastfeed with confidence. In the last year it has impacted over 7,000 UK mums, launched it's Buy Back service, designed new Zero Waste collections, and become Bcorp certified. The Social Impact of the Bshirt claims:
- 84% of 1,500 customers surveyed felt more confident feeding in front of others while wearing their Bshirt.
- 79% of women we surveyed found breastfeeding easier while wearing their Bshirt.
- 68% reported reduced social isolation and improved mental health as a result of being able to breastfeed in public whenever necessary, with minimised stress and embarrassment.
Social enterprises are businesses that trade for a social or environmental purpose. There are an estimated 100,000 social enterprises in the UK contributing around £60bn annually to the UK economy and are set up to tackle some of the biggest challenges facing society.
The UK Social Enterprise Awards are awarded by Social Enterprise UK, the UK’s leading membership body for social enterprises and recognise excellence and innovation in UK social enterprises. [Insert name] will be joining other shortlisted organisations and guests at a prestigious awards ceremony held at London’s iconic Roundhouse on Thursday 8 December.
Previous winners have included a legal firm representing vulnerable people, a crowdfunding platform helping homeless people into work, and a network of zero waste supermarkets – demonstrating the diversity of the social enterprise in the UK.
Commenting on being shortlisted, Lisa Lessware says:
"This is a real honour for our business. We put impact as important as profits, which sets us apart from our competitors. We are unique in that
we are a company limited by shares, but we have a self-imposed asset lock on our profits, and a social lock on our mission. We feel all businesses should operate in this way - by considering the impact their products have on the environment, on making their customer’s lives better, as well as the bottom line. This focus on impact - both social and environmental - is at the heart of everything we do - from the packaging we choose, to the colours and styles of our products. We want our customers to know that we are in business to make their lives better.
"Because we are using recycled cotton, we consume 30% fewer raw materials. The benefits of recycled cotton to the environment are measurable and widespread. The benefit to our business is a circular business model as we expand with new products, new fabrics and new customers.
"As a registered Social Enterprise we are motivated and driven by the social impact of our activities and interventions. It’s the positive change we can see in people’s lives that is the most valuable and valued part of our work."
Commenting on the Awards, Chief Executive of Social Enterprise UK Peter Holbrook said:
“The UK Social Enterprise Awards are the ultimate showcase of the impact and excellence of social enterprises. These are trailblazers and standard setters for how to do business better, in ways that put people and planet first. They empower and uplift communities. They show us all how we can do business in a way that helps the environment. And they do all this while facing the same challenges as other businesses.
“In these turbulent times, they are a beacon of innovation, optimism and resilience. Those who have made the shortlist of these awards have proven their business’ ability to weather the storm of the pandemic, keeping their business and their mission on track.
“The challenges we face as a society demand new approaches and a shift in the way that businesses big and small act. The entries for this year’s award continue to inspire, innovate and show us all how businesses can help us meet many of these challenges head on.”
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About social enterprise
Social enterprises are businesses which trade for a social purpose that reinvest or donate over half their profits to further their social or environmental mission. They are an increasingly important part of the UK economy contributing £60 billion and employing around two million people. There are an estimated 100,000 social enterprises in the UK. Research carried out by Social Enterprise UK, the membership body for the sector, shows they are outperforming traditional businesses when it comes to start-up rates, turnover growth and innovation. They are also ahead of the pack when it comes to workforce diversity and pay. For more information and statistics see Social Enterprise UK’s State of Social enterprise Report 2019 and the 'Hidden Revolution' report which showed the true scale and impact of the sector.
About Social Enterprise UK
Social Enterprise UK is the largest network of certified social enterprises in the UK and a global authority on social enterprise. SEUK exists to be a strong voice for social enterprise, to evidence the difference that social enterprises are making and to demonstrate solutions and influence decision-makers to create an environment in which social enterprise can thrive. We work with mainstream businesses and public sector institutions to help them bring social enterprises into their supply chains. SEUK members reflect the diversity of social enterprise in the UK, ranging from local grass-roots organisations to multi-million-pound businesses.