Bringing It to Market

Dundee Social Enterprise Network (DSEN) recently celebrated its 10th anniversary by taking a stall at the Festive Market, which ran over a Friday and Saturday.  Six DSEN members endured freezing temperatures to showcase their products, in the Slessor Gardens which is located beside the new V&A Museum.

This was the first time that DSEN had supported its members to take part in a city centre market.  This was largely because the Social Enterprise Network in Dundee had been predominantly service based, with relatively few organisations producing or selling goods. There was also a view that some of the SE goods might not be of the same standard as those of experienced commercial organisations.

So it was with a wee bit of apprehension that we took our place on the stall as dusk fell on the Friday evening.  We had no need to worry however, as the members had put a great deal of thought and effort into ensuring that their products were well produced and professionally branded and packaged.  The SEs were also without doubt the most engaging stall holders, chatting with customers and letting them know about what their organisations were all about and the added value that their products offered.







We had a varied range of members present:

The Special Candles Trust design and make bespoke remembrance candles, which are given free to people who are experiencing loss or bereavement.  They are produced by ex-service personnel who are facing a range of challenges, and being involved in this work has played a really important part in their recovery journey.  SCT were however facing real challenges in terms of funding their work and so have embarked on creating a new commercialised arm, which will produce individualised candles for special occasions, such as retirements and christenings.  This has involved working with DSEN to create new branding and packaging as well as creating a more engaging online presence.

Rock Solid is a youth club for young people in Douglas, some of whom are facing a range of challenges.  RS run an entrepreneurial scheme, with the young people involved at every stage – from designing the products, to deciding how to distribute the profits. The young folk loved being involved in the market and were demon sales people.

How it Felt is a young social enterprise providing puppet building, drama and film making workshops, focusing mostly on mental and emotional well-being. This can include group workshops, one to one sessions and commissions. Debz and her puppet Little Debz proved really popular with young and old alike.

Dundee & Angus Wood Recycling take old pallets and other unused materials and turn them into a range of fantastic garden furniture, shop fittings and also offer a bespoke design service.  They offer everyone the chance to learn new skills, but particularly for those with additional support needs.  Richard and his colleagues have faced a lengthy development journey, but now have suitable premises, become incorporated (CIC), a burgeoning order book and an ever increasing range of volunteers wanting to take part.  They have just been awarded a development grant from DSEN, which will enable them to buy a van and their next step is looking to finance their first paid member of staff.

Tin Roof is an organisation set up and run by artists in Dundee. They aim to support artists and the wider creative community by providing resources and a collaborative atmosphere.  They have just overcome a major barrier this year when they lost their premises, but have co-located with other art initiatives and are back running fantastic pottery and ceramic sessions for the local community.

Uppertunity is a recently formed CIC that offers a skills development and self-determination service to people who might be considered vulnerable. Uppertunity looks at the individual’s strengths and possibilities, and then work with them to create long-term independence. DSEN has supported them with a feasibility grant that allowed them to run a series of trial sessions.  Two of the people that take part in the Uppertunity programmes, were part of their sales team and clearly loved the experience.

DSEN has come along way since its inception in 2007, growing from a handful of enterprises, to a dynamic network with 76 members and offering a wide range of goods and services.  This Festive Market felt like another step for the Network and it certainly was a success, with a collective sales total of over £1000, with additional orders still coming in.  It also helped to spread the message and demonstrate to others what SE is all about.


Cultural Diversity Training delivered by Al-Mushkah CIC

Working smarter with multicultural colleagues, customers, and clients.

-Do you sometimes struggle to understand why others think and act in ways different from your own?

-Would you like to learn how to improve your communication skills to work better with colleagues, customers, and clients from other cultures?

-Do you feel sometimes that what you say is understood in a different way to what you meant, especially from people of a different culture?

-Have you ever felt offended by the body language of someone from a different culture?

If your answer to any of the above questions is yes, then this training is best suited for you!

Course Description

Cultural differences can be a source of embarrassment, misunderstanding or taking offence, but they can also be a source of enjoyment and creativity. The aim of this workshop is to help participants reduce the likelihood of these negatives happening by showing how to become more aware of other cultures, perceptions, and behavioral norms in order to create a rapport quickly.

This half-day workshop is designed to give an understanding and appreciation of the issues of working with different cultures from our own, with special focus on the Middle East. It will help you understand and respect differences and move beyond them to achieve the desired goals. Cultural differences should never prevent you from meeting your goals or getting the job done! Understanding cultural differences will help you to be more creative in what you want to achieve.

This course will address vital areas such as the importance of cultural awareness, etiquette, communication, relationship building and traditions, as well as more complex topics such as religion, cross cultural attitudes, and language.

We’re looking for 3 organisations to trial our ” Cultural Diversity Training”. This course can be delivered at your own pace, in your own time… for FREE. All we ask is your honest feedback, and your review of the course.

Training Objectives

Our cultural diversity training will:

Increase participants’ cultural intelligence and appreciation of cultural differences.

Prepare people to work better with others of a different culture from their own.

Provide practical tips for managing cultural differences.

Improve communication skills.

Training outcomes

After our training, participants will be able to:

Explain why cultural intelligence is important.

Outline the significant cultural values to keep in mind when working in a multi-cultural context.

Recognise the key business values to respect when working with people from other cultures, particularly the Middle East.

Acquire tips and strategies for successful performance at your meetings and through your correspondence.

Understand variations in body language and paralanguage.

Understand how cultures view and use time.


Date & Time: January (to be negotiated)

Location: company-Specific / In-House

To register your interest please Contact

Dr Rana Abu-Mounes


Mobile: 07446907025


Christmas Fayre at D&A College

Tuesday 05 December at Gardyne Campus
Wednesday 06 December at Kingsway Campus
You will be provided with a parking space, table, electricity if required and tea/coffee.  There will be a small daily charge of £5 for this event. As in previous years this charge will go towards our care funds.  This year it will be supporting our elderly care parcels – which is one of our student citizenship projects.
This year D&A College are very excited to launch Craft Workshops at our Kingsway Campus Fayre.  For these pilot sessions,  they are looking for short 30 minute workshops to be led by some of you. They would advertise these around the college and get bookings for each workshop. This will be a lovely opportunity to not only showcase your products, but also share some of your amazing skills with groups of students and staff. If you would be interested in running one of these workshops please just indicate on the booking form and they will contact you directly to discuss it further. 

Dundee TSI’s first Independent Chair

Dundee’s Third Sector Interface has appointed David Dorward as its first Independent Chair, effective from 1 October 2017.

The Third Sector Interface, known as the TSI, is made up of three organisations in the city – Volunteer Dundee, Dundee Social Enterprise Network and Dundee Voluntary Action – and supports and represents the sector.
David was previously Chief Executive of Dundee City Council and currently works as the local Associate Director with the Rank Foundation, supporting local projects which build on the city’s assets and investing in its potential.
Lynne Cameron, Convenor of Volunteer Dundee, said “I am delighted that David is joining the team, bringing his wealth of experience and expertise to the TSI. Charities and community organisations make a real difference to the lives of the people of Dundee by offering services and opportunities and we believe that the appointment of David as Independent Chair will strengthen the umbrella body.”
Derek Marshall, Convenor of Dundee Social Enterprise Network, added “David has an in-depth understanding of the challenges faced by the third sector and the incredible potential they have to transform the communities they serve. We are looking forward to working together to implement forthcoming changes to the function and funding of TSIs across the country which we expect Scottish Government to announce shortly.”
Lorna Edwards, Convenor of Dundee Voluntary Action, said “As Independent Chair of the TSI, David will support the three partner organisations with good governance, facilitate joint working and ensure that we continue to deliver well against the Scottish Government framework this year.”

Research Consultant for Childcare for all project


Recruitment process

Bids by tender to:

Closing date for bids: 5pm on Friday 27th October 2017

Start date:  November 2017

Research Brief

We are seeking to appoint a researcher:

  • To review the existing provision of childcare, nursery and after school clubs in Dundee
  • To undertake consultation with professionals and the community as well as communities of interest to establish the needs for childcare
  • To study successful childcare models in other regions to establish alternative options
  • To take a lead from the Project Coordinator on direction of project
  • To collaborate with and report to the Project Coordinator

Other tasks that may be included are:

  • To advise on organisation legal models
  • To provide financial modelling to support the business plan
  • To provide a strategic overview for the business plan
  • To support a Stage 2 application

We are looking for a consultant who has knowledge and experience of the childcare sector.  Experience of community consultation and stakeholder engagement will be essential.  Knowledge of social enterprise is also necessary.

The project is funded by the Aspiring Communities Fund.  We will pay a daily rate of £300 which is to include travel expenses and all other associated costs (including overheads and printing) up to a maximum of £26 000. For more information please see the link below.

Research consultant brief