Local Social Enterprises recognised at “Powerful Together” Awards

On the first Friday of October, over 200 guests gathered at Liverpool Town Hall for Social Enterprise Network’s Powerful Together Awards. The Awards celebrate social businesses who are leading the way in their fields, using innovative methods to improve the health, wealth and environment of the Liverpool City Region.

Guests arrived at 7pm and were treated to a delicious menu of hot and cold tapas and specially selected wines and beers, all created by social enterprise caterer Can Cook, before heading into the main ballroom for the awards presentation. The ceremony saw 16 winners in total, including Autism Initiatives’ local food project We Grow Co, who were crowned Green Social Enterprise Champion and community radio initiative Mersey Media, who took home the Rising Star Award. Surprises on the night included Bollywood dancing from Rushee, and the biggest social enterprise selfie ever seen.

Of the 24 shortlisted nominees, 2 organisations won multiple awards. The first was PLS, who re-house ex-offenders and males at risk of homelessness, helping them turn their lives around and giving them the skills they need to integrate back into society. They picked up both the Growth Award, sponsored by Fusion21, and headline sponsor Vivark’s award which recognises Profound Impact.

The second double winner was Genie in the Gutter, a recovery service working with substance-misusers who are marginalised from society. They were named Pay-It-Forward champion, sponsored by Knowsley CVS, and received a standing ovation as winners of the Mayor’s Award for Social Innovation, for which all shortlisted nominees compete.

Genie in the Gutter Director Carolyn Edwards said:

“Being recognised in such a way by our peers and industry leaders was both a proud and humbling experience, and being chosen for the overall Mayors Award for Social Innovation left us all in a state of shock, so much so that for a few moments we actually forgot we had to go up on stage and collect it! The awards have made the whole team feel validated and recognised, which includes our service users – the heartbeat of Genie In The Gutter – and that means everything.”

Rosie Jolly, CEO of SENTogether said:

“I could not be prouder of this year’s nominees; they all work incredibly hard to support the most vulnerable members of our communities on a day-to-day basis, putting social value at the forefront of our local economy. Congratulations to each and every one.”

Full details of award winners are below:


Community Enterprise Award

Winner: Wellbeing Enterprises

Runner up: PLS

Rising Star Award

Winner: Mersey Media

Runner up: Agent Academy

Creativity Award

Winner: Big Love Sista

Runner up: Genie in the Gutter

Mentoring Champion of the Year

Winner: Furniture Resource Centre

Runner up: Voice of Nations

Green Social Enterprise Champion

Winner: We Grow Co

Runner up: Tomorrow’s Women Wirral

Healthy Environments Award

Winner: Tomorrow Women Wirral

Runner up: Safe Productions

Pay It Forward Award

Winner: Genie in the Gutter

Runner up: Komaru

Growth Award

Winner: PLS

Runner up: Women’s Enterprising Breakthrough

Digital Champion

Winner: The Women’s Organisation

Runner up: Sandbox Digital

Social Advocate

Winner: School for Social Entrepreneurs NW

Runner up: Wirral CVS

Young Social Entrepreneur

Winner: Matt Smith (Fresh Team)

Runner up: Matthew Elliott (Collective Encounters)

Arts and Cultural Champion

Winner: Open Culture

Runner up: The Reader Organisation

Best Example of Collaboration, Effective Partnership or Consortium

Winner: Life Story Network

Runner up: Confederation of Social Entrepreneurs

Behaviour Changed Award

Winner: Ariel Trust

Runner up: PLS

Profound Impact Award

Winner: PLS

Runner up: Genie in the Gutter

Mayor’s Award for Social Innovation

Winner: Genie in the Gutter

Runner up: PLS

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