A social firm is a specialist social enterprise that focuses on employing or increasing employment chances for job-disadvantaged people.
Many social firms offer a mix of job-training and jobs, so it is possible to be an employment and an employability social firm at the same time.
Everyone needs to feel part of the community. For most people, finding themselves out of work is a devastating experience, and in an economic downturn there are fewer jobs to go round. Being excluded from work is a normal experience. We call this job-disadvantaged.
People who are job-disadvantaged are likely to be from one of five groups.
They have or have had:
- physical disability
- learning disability
- learning difficulty
- ill mental health
- been homeless
- been in prison or have a criminal record
Social firms believe that everyone should have the opportunity to be employed, and so have set up to provide jobs and training for individuals in these job-disadvantaged groups. They know that often an individual experiences more than one type of job- disadvantage, which increases the difficulty that they might have in finding a job on the open labour market.
Social firm managers are uniquely experienced in providing a supportive and empowering environment for social firm workers and trainees. They balance the needs of the business with the needs of the individual, and are expert in building confidence and skills for job-disadvantaged people.
For more information on Social Firms UK visit: www.socialfirmsengland.co.uk