The votes have been counted and the results are in: readers of The Big Issue have spoken, and the winner of the vote for the UK’s favourite social enterprise was revealed at a glittering awards ceremony last night.
We are delighted to announce Change Please – a fantastic coffee company which employs homeless people to be baristas at carts across London – was voted Consumer Facing Social Enterprise of the Year in The Big Issue Readers’ Choice at the Social Enterprise UK Awards.
It has been a landmark year for the social enterprise which has have grown from having one cart in Covent Garden two years ago to 15 sites across London. The fantastic coffee – which you can buy in The Big Issue Shop – also made it onto the shelves of 375 Sainsbury’s stores in September to spread the operation nationwide.
Yaaaaaaas @ChangePlease led by one of the nicest social entrepreneurs I've ever met, bloody brilliant business, beautiful coffee and AMAZING LIFE CHANGING SOCIAL IMPACT! @SocialEnt_UK#SocEntAwards17#socentpic.twitter.com/YfoFmYvNVy
— Tony Colville (@tony_colville) November 23, 2017
Big Issue editor Paul McNamee said: “It was a hotly contested public vote for an incredibly strong shortlist of innovative and creative social enterprises, from gardens to breweries, and we were bowled over by readers’ enthusiasm when we asked them to back their favourite. Change Please is a worthy winner, and have developed their business by expanding into coffee sales through Sainsbury’s earlier this year. The SEUK Awards showcases the best of Britain’s growing social enterprise field, and as one of the nation’s longest-running social enterprises The Big Issue was delighted to be a partner for the award.”
— John Bird (@johnbirdswords) November 23, 2017