Type of Fellowship: Specialist
Year of Fellowship: 2011
The Calouste Gulbenkian Fellowship for an aspiring leader committed to innovative approaches to policy and practical work with people experiencing multiple needs and exclusions.
Update October 2012
This is proving to be a whirlwind of a year. I am now beginning to have far greater sympathy with those Clore Social Fellows who have been trying to do their Fellowship on a part-time basis! Getting the right balance between investing in personal development through the Fellowship and delivering on my commitments with Bangor University and Social Impact Consulting is a challenge.
My main focus from a Fellowship point of view continues to be my research. In studying social enterprise and homelessness I thought I was deepening in my knowledge in an area I already knew well. In fact I’m finding a number of my preconceptions being challenged and the results of the research somewhat surprising. I’m hoping that the resulting report, when I finally finish it, will be useful to practitioners and policy makers to use social enterprise effectively in helping homeless adults with multiple needs into employment.
Regular coaching sessions are also helping me to lift my head up and take the time to pause and reflect - a lesson I keep needing to re-learn. I undertook some extremely useful training on campaigning, delivered by fellow Clore Social Fellow Esther Foreman. And I am planning to fit in some further training in voice coaching and project planning before my time (and budget) run out at the end of the year.
I continue to enjoy the friendship and support of the other Fellows. Our Action Learning set has continued as a virtual set. Although this isn’t as satisfying as a face-to-face set it is still very valuable and more practical and sustainable given the geographically dispersed nature of our set. Alongside my part time, strategic position as Director of Social Enterprise at Bangor University, I continue to run Social Impact Consulting.
Both these positions allow me to play to my strengths as a leader: setting things up, acting as a catalyst for action, and using social enterprise to deliver sustainable social impact.
The Fellowship gave me the space to work out what I wanted and how I could best use my experience and skills. It gave me an invaluable set of connections which have led to much of my initial work, and it gave me the confidence to realise that my knowledge and experience was valuable.
Current principal role: Director
Current principal organisation: Social Impact Consulting
Other leadership role 1: Director of Social Enterprise
Other organisation 1: Bangor University
Research: Social Enterprises & Homelessness. Sustainability or Social Impact?
Research topics: Employment; Housing; Impact; Social enterprise;
Secondment host: Barnardos