As part of Global Entrepreneurship Week, Richard Myers spoke at the Social Enterprise Startup Weekend at the Northern Design Centre in Gateshead from the 21st November to the 23rd November.

Social Enterprise Startup Weekend 2Aimed at students/graduates of the five North-Eastern Universities (Newcastle, Northumbria, Teesside, Sunderland and Durham), attendees received 24 hours worth of advice and activities from a range of experienced entrepreneurs (including Richard) as well as the chance to place themselves into teams and rapidly develop a business idea. The ideas would be pitched to a panel of judges on Sunday. Throughout the process, attendees had access to a pool of mentors that helped them through the process.

Attendees were divided into five groups where they started creating the idea during the weekend.


They were:

  1. ICE Network - using food and schools to reach parents
  2. NEW Leaf - free printing service for students where commercial sponsors are advertised on the back of the printed sheet.
  3. mPower - Car servicing to improve employability prospects
  4. Lift-Up - Empowering women in refuges by teaching them how to make and sell bras.
  5. Pass It On - Text books passed on with notes already written in.

Lift-UpOn the Sunday, they pitched to an expert panel of judges including:

Kate Welch, Social Enterprise Acumen, Ellen Shipley, Partnership and funding Manager at Unltd, Simon Hanson, Regional Manager of the Federation of Small Businesses and Roy Sandbach, leads the North East Local Enterprise Partnership’s (LEP) strategic innovation strand.

Team ‘Lift-up’ won the competition basing their idea on a social enterprise to help support refugees and females affected by domestic violence.

The weekend was a success and if you want to see more feedback about the event, check out the Social Enterprise Startup Weekend on Twitter.