Social value by choice

The Social Value (Public Services) Act 2012 requires people who commission, or buy, public services to consider securing added economic, social or environmental benefits for their local area.

In September 2014 it was announced Lord Young, the Prime Minister’s Adviser on Enterprise, was leading a review, supported by Chris White MP, Hazel Blears MP, the Federation of Small Businesses, and Michael O’Toole, chief executive of Mentor UK.

Rob Wilson MP Minister for Civil Society thanked Lord Young in February 2015 for undertaking a review commenting "This review has been a valuable exercise in understanding how the Act has fared in its first two years and what more we can now do to support this important piece of legislation. I was pleased to see that the review found the Act having such a positive effect where it is being taken up. The range of stakeholders who see exciting potential in the Act and the sheer breadth of innovation that is starting to be uncovered, helps us to place the Act in a clearer light, to fully understand its potential and think about how we can now support this".

Midlands Together would undoubtedly be numbered among those stakeholders having invested over £1 million in contracts with Social Enterprise partners during this year. Jericho Construction from Birmingham were appointed as main contractors on the Hestia House scheme in Hamstead Birmingham. The windows UPVC Double Glazed Units were manufactured and fitted by Shelforce and Argonaut Community Enterprises provided cleaning services at the end of the contract.

Midlands Together has taken every opportunity to amplify the social impact of their investment in this project; beyond the core mission of creating employment and reducing re-offending where some fantastic results have been delivered. The project has been the catalyst for a number of conversations in the local community and there are some exciting opportunities to explore in 2016.