Building a European network of incubators for social innovation
The BENISI partners aimed to build a Europe-wide network of networks of incubators for social innovation.
This network proactively identified at least 300 social innovations with a high potential for scaling, and ensured the delivery of necessary support services to those social innovations.
Networks are already structured collaboratively. They are more able to spread knowledge and practice horizontally and they are the perfect ally when trying to develop a Europe-wide programme that needs to balance local action with continent-wide strategy and vision.
How it worked

The BENISI programme brings together a group of 12 organisations from 7 countries constantly in search for new ideas that can make a social impact.

As part of the BENISI programme we:

Identified Social Innovations

Helped organisations figure out if they could be qualified as a Social Innovation

Had mentors that coached dedicated organisations/ change makers

Helped great ideas find financial support and investment

The UK cohort
Stickyboard

Stickyboard aims to be the world’s local web developer. They build sites and platforms for local organisations and reinvest half their profits back into a UK wide Village Noticeboard for all to benefit.

Stour Space

 

Stour Space is a socially minded organisation offering exhibition, performance and studio space for the development of creative enterprises.

Sumak Travel

Sumak Travel is a platform featuring tours and sustainable tourism destinations in Latin America. They use our expertise to connect you with one (or several) of the trusted local partners of our extensive network. They will then create travel itineraries tailor-made to suit your individual tastes and preferences.

Trading Times

 

Trading Times is an online skills-matching service – connecting the skills, experience & availability of over-50s with local employers – for the purposes of paid part-time/flexible work.

Two Fingers Brewing Co

Two Fingers Brewing Co. is the only beer brand that gives back to the men that drink it, by giving all profits to prostate cancer charities.

Visbuzz

Visbuzz makes video calling very simple for those who don’t use computers or who can’t use computers. It is designed to include everyone in the digital communication revolution.

We Walk The Line

 

We Walk the Line empowers tomorrow’s entrepreneurs with business and barista skills. We are a not-for-profit social enterprise working with people who need a chance.

Bikeworks

Bikeworks is a London based not for profit social enterprise that uses cycling as a tool to tackle social and environmental challenges in the community.

ForCommonCause.Org

ForCommonCause.org allows donors and volunteers to communicate directly with people who are economically disadvantaged to help them build micro-enterprises and liveilhoods.

On Purpose

Many professionals are no longer satisfied with only creating shareholder returns and instead believe that socially and environmentally-focused business models can help solve society’s toughest problems. In 2010 On Purpose started their  Associate Programme in London to attract and develop leaders for purpose-driven businesses. Now they have expanded to Paris and Berlin and launched a CEO Programme to develop those already running purpose-driven organisations.

Campaign Bootcamp

Campaign Bootcamp gives campaigners the skills, confidence and network they need to run progressive campaigns that build a fairer, greener and more equal world.

Care Opinion

Care Opinion is a place where you can share your experience of health or care services, and help make them better for everyone.

They make it safe and simple to share your story online and see other people’s stories too. You can see how stories are leading to change.

They think that by sharing honest experiences of care, we learn to see the world differently.

Farm: Shop

Farm: Shop launched in 2010 with the aim of bringing farming into the city. 
They aim to: 
1) To excite and inspire city dwellers to grow their own food and make an income doing this.
2) To create direct links between farms in the countryside with communities in cities
3) To grow food commercially via a network of Farm’s across cities and retail this food at shop’s

Crowdskills

The gig economy represents a shift in the future of work – moving towards a more flexible working day where output is valued more than input.

Crowdskills mission is to enable organisations to realise the value of young peoples’ talents.  This way, the market can access a whole new crowd of skilled providers, and young people can launch successful freelance careers.

GrowUp Urban Farms

GrowUp Urban Farms is committed to feeding people in a way that is positive for communities and the environment, today and in the future.

They produce sustainable salads and herbs using vertical growing technologies and through the use of Controlled Environment Production (CEP).They’re changing the way food is grown and distributed and reconnecting people with the story of food from farm to fork.

Filisia Interfaces

Filisia Interfaces is an award-winning system that changes the way that early years learners and young people with SEN train their physical, cognitive and communication skills.

Inspire Foundation

Inspire Foundation’s aim is to equip young adults with essential life skills – resulting in employment and a voluntary commitment that is recognized and long term.

 

Give Me Tap

Plastic waste is a major issue. Only 20% of plastic bottles get recycled and over 50 billion plastic bottles go to waste every year.

Yet we have some of the cleanest water in the world. To help people gain easy access to this precious resource,  the GiveMeTap Water Network was created.

You can take your bottle to one of the 800 cafes, bars and restaurants in The Water Network and they will refill your water bottle for free.

Much Better Foundation

The Much Better Foundation is a grant giving body that aims to give vital financial support to carefully selected grassroots conservation and sustainable development projects, chosen by local hosts, and making a difference in the destinations they call home.

Insane Logic

Insane Logic creates mobile tools to aid and support language acquisition and people with speech and language difficulties to communicate.

Open Cinema

 OPEN CINEMA is a nationwide network of film clubs programmed by and for excluded or marginalised people. Each week participants watch the best in classic and contemporary cinema and work with professional filmmakers to create films of their own.

Karisma Kidz

Karisma Kidz is an interactive brand, based on more than 20 years of research, that teaches children aged 3-9 to be happier and provides feedback to the whole family.

Their mission is to strengthen parent child bonds to create a world in which children are empowered, well behaved and grow with happiness, confidence and creativity while parents engage with their little superheroes in a virtual world that links seamlessly with positive activities, toys and rewards in the real world.

Practive Ltd Designs

Practivate Ltd Designs, develops and delivers social impact programming through social enterprise career building and entrepreneurship development for global citizens at economic risk.

RubyMoon

RubyMoon is a social enterprise that benefits women entrepreneurs in developing nations. 100% of the net profits they make are given to women across 13 different countries as a micro-loan to launch their business generating an income for them and their family to find a path out of poverty. All our garments are named in tribute to the inspiring women that they are proud to support.

See What I Mean

The See What I Mean App is an innovative solution to communication problems for people living with dementia.

Speakset

Speakset provide a video connection from a health professional to a patient’s TV in their own home. This empowers the local population to live independently and improves their lives. At the same time health professionals can focus on doing what they love, delivering compassionate care rather than spending hours a week travelling.

Stand Alone

Stand Alone offers support services to prevent estranged adults becoming vulnerable. They talk openly about the experience of family estrangement to help others lead lives that are less isolated.

Creating impact by supporting businesses for good

We offer a variety of programmes at a local, national and international level. These programmes are aimed at people who want to start or scale up.