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SIS Retail Academy 2021: Meet the cohort!

We’re thrilled to announce the impactful organisations that will be joining us this week for the SIS Retail Academy 2021.

Once again, we’ve taken the programme online and will be joined by over 30 organisations from across the UK who are eager to learn, scale and grow their social and environmental impact.

The SIS Retail Academy aims to inspire, offer practical insight and knowledge and the opportunity to meet with retail and corporate buyers. The programme is designed to provide the very best training, guidance and support for social entrepreneurs.

So, without further ado, introducing the SIS Retail Academy 2021 cohort:

Kerry Anderson, Founding Director, Brave Strong Beautiful CIC

We are a social enterprise hairdressing company providing employment opportunities and training for disadvantaged young people. The young people we work with are seriously disadvantaged and most are affected by homelessness, drug addiction and neglect.

We also provide mental health support and mindfulness workshops to ensure young people are successful in gaining their SVQ2 in hairdressing. Check out their website here.

Rosaline Scott & Alison Rogers, Co-founders, Toothbuckle Ltd

Toothbuckle makes affordable and sustainable products for ordinary families who want to be responsible consumers. We showcase how, with the inspired design, we meet our customers’ needs with high quality, innovative, eco-friendly bamboo toothbrush covers that prevent bacterial growth in-between brushing. And at the same time, swap out a plastic polluting toothbrush for a matching eco-friendly bamboo toothbrush, taking active responsibility for ourselves and the environment.

Check out their website here.

Alexis Kirsten, CEO, Arts Factory

We are a social enterprise graphic design studio that has been producing creative communications for a range of clients for over 20 years. One hundred per cent of the profits generated in our design studio are used to support the Arts Factory charity which supports vulnerable adults (those with physical, mental, or emotional disabilities) in one of Wales’ most disadvantaged areas.

Check out their website here.

Narita Woods, Director, The Fox & Bean CIC

Coffee – classes – creativity. We want to gather people around creativity in both classes and events, to open connections in our community and to support local artists – an important task in
socially divided Northern Ireland. We use creativity for its wider wellbeing properties, and to form a neutral basis for people to meet. We also sell products from our partner local artists, and our wider mission is to empower women from our profits.

Check out their website here.

Mellissa Berry, Co-founder & Director, Fed 4 Good / Include

Food with Purpose. We aim to tackle stigma and food poverty one good meal at a time because we believe everyone deserves to eat well. Buy homemade, handmade and luxury food through hampers, gifting, special occasions whilst also supporting a social enterprise. Eat good, do good by buying social you are showing and supporting those in need that you care and believe they deserve the chance to change their futures.

Check out their website here.

Shauna McFall, Manager, Naturally North Coast & Glens CIC

Naturally North Coast and Glens is a social enterprise that delivers artisan markets in NI, and a farm shop to help support small businesses, bring communities together and help revitalise urban spaces.

Check out their website here.

James Faddes, Founder, Glesga Roasters

Glesga Roasters is a social enterprise fusing three passions. Our
mission and purpose is:

1. To produce high quality, local artisan, roasted coffee.
2. To trade fairly and directly with coffee cooperatives in Rwanda.
3. To create a socially relevant tool for rehabilitation, mentoring,
employability and belonging within the local community. 

Check out their website here.

Louise Pearson, Marketing & Communications Co-ordinator, Gairloch and Loch Ewe Action Forum

Gairloch and Loch Ewe Action Forum is a registered charity, social enterprise and development trust working towards building strong resilient communities in the North West Highlands. Our flagship project, The GALE Centre houses our community cafe, gift shop and tourist information services. We sell a diverse range of gifts including products made by 60+ local artists and designers.

Check out their website here.

Lara Greene, Director, Transform Arts CIC

Transform Arts CIC is a dynamic social enterprise based in Selkirk.

We offer creative classes, workshops and events which nurture creativity, confidence, and innovation. We deliver bespoke arts projects and community art commissions. We have a growing range of environmentally conscious sustainable craft kits. Our social mission is to reduce the inequalities of access to and engagement with the arts across the Scottish Borders.

Check out their website here.

Patricia Papworth, Director, Stitch the Gap CIC

Stitch the Gap runs sewing machine sessions within our community. Our vision is to have a direct impact on climate change by equipping individuals with the sewing machine skills to reduce, recycle and repurpose fabric. By removing barriers to learning, we empower individuals to learn new life skills, improve wellbeing, and increase employment opportunities for those marginalised by society.

Check out their website here.

Mary Beth Graham, Sales & Marketing Manager, ApparelXchange CIC

We are a social enterprise dedicated to reuse, repair, and recycling
for childrenswear. Our mission is to reduce the impact of clothing
on our planet. Families can shop second hand with us, donate
clothing to us and receive free clothing from us when times are
challenging. Schools can get support from us, share education opportunities with us and grow greener alongside us. We believe
that sustainable fashion is for everyone. We know together,
#WeeChanges will make a big difference.

Check out their website here.

Amy Greenfield, Director of Awesome, Awesome Wales Enterprises CIC

Awesome is a zero-waste shop helping customers to cut food waste
and the use of single-use plastic packaging.

Check out their website here.

Calvin Davies, CEO, Resource Renew

Resource Renew is a self-funding social enterprise based in Holyhead. Our principal focus is the reuse of furniture and household domestic appliances. Whilst recycling the materials is of environmental benefit, we use the activities associated with the repair, refurbishment, assembly, collection, delivery, cleaning and testing of domestic appliances and furniture as means of creating meaningful work for our beneficiaries – adults with learning difficulties.

Check out their website here.

Calum Dick, Business Improvement Graduate, Fyne Futures

Fyne Futures aims to reduce carbon and provide employability opportunities to people who experience barriers to employment. We help achieve this through three main business units: Bute Produce, Restyle and CarBute. We are introducing BikeBute and our preserve range in the near future.

Check out their website here.

Jenny Trott, Director, Mecoco

Mecoco offer opportunities for people with disabilities, including those with profound and complex needs the chance to experience the workplace, do something meaningful, contribute and learn new skills. They create a range of scented candles, wax melts, reed diffusers and related gifts. Mecoco work towards educating their community, customers, other employers on the value of inclusive employment.

Check out their website here

Pranav Chopra, CEO, and Kasia Cheng, Operations Executive, NEMI Teas

Nemi Teas is a London-based specialist tea company offering a variety of Organic and Fairtrade tea blends both loose and in pyramid teabags. It also offers a 100% natural Spicy Chai Syrup for use in chai lattes and chai cocktails. It supplies teas and syrup to over 250 cafes, delis and supermarkets across the UK and Europe. NEMI Teas is a sustainability leader as its teabags are made of corn starch and the packaging is made of wood-pulp, where both materials are 100% plastic-free and compostable. Even the teabags’ string is attached by ultrasound, not glue. The business believes in creating positive change providing employment to refugees, helping them to integrate through work experience.

Check out their website here.

Tony O’Neill, Founder, Animalia Apparel

Animalia is a Scottish brand with a social heartbeat. Animalia Apparel creates world-class fight wear tested by world champions and international athletes. The main clothing lines are high-performance. Animalia CIC exists to release the potential of every young person in Scotland – to enable them to take control of their lives, do what they enjoy and be an active part of their communities.

Check out their website here.

Nicola Cramond, Director, Kindness & CO

Kindness & CO was borne out of a love for fragrance and a need to fundraise. As a trustee of South Ayrshire School Clothing Bank, I encountered many local charities and organisations doing some truly wonderful work so wanted to create a business doing something I love and raising funds at the same time.

Check out their website here.

Sara Thomson, CEO, TThe Leith Collective

The Leith Collective is a supported retail space with a huge dedication to sustainability. We offer supported space for artists and makers to sell their work, and we educate them on sustainability. We run workshops based on upcycling and offer supported employment places for people with mental health or learning disabilities.

Check out their website here.

Garry Byars, Graphic Designer/Artist, Sunshine Gallery

The Sunshine Gallery was set up in 2009 to provide exhibition space to local community groups and local artists. Exhibiting a wide diversity of talents and skills from Renfrewshire artists, selling original artwork and limited prints either for your home or for that unique gift. We currently have over 15 local artists, with their original artwork on display and for sale. If you wish to display your artwork or craft work, please visit the Sunshine Gallery at Paisley Shopping Centre Market (Level 2), 23 High Street, Paisley PA1 2AF.

Check out their website here.

Debbi McCulloch, Business & Operations Manager, The Spartans Community Football Academy

We are re-defining what is possible for a football club in terms of community engagement and participation by delivering positive social impact through the power of people and sport. As a social enterprise and charity, we reinvest our profits into delivering much needed youth work, education and health and well-being programmes within our North Edinburgh community. We operate our facilities and community coaching programmes as a social enterprise, reinvesting profits back into the business to support our positive social impact in the community.

Check out their website here.

Samantha Moir, CEO, Merry-Go-Round Glasgow

Merry-Go-Round is an established community-led social enterprise. We exist to support local families by providing a range of facilities and services – in the main providing access to pre-loved low-cost children’s goods in our boutique shop. We also bring people together in our community space by hosting supportive events and activities, and we also provide around 70 packs of free goods per month to families in need.

Check out their website here.

Chris Bowsher, Volunteering & Marketing Officer, Vision 21 Cyfle Cymru

Located at facilities across South East Wales, V21 supports life-changing opportunities for people with learning disabilities to realise their potential through; catering, growing, creating, learning, and making initiatives. Many of these projects are social enterprises that provide training for people with learning disabilities and volunteering opportunities for others.

Check out their website here.

Samuel Jones, Administration Assistant, Fort Augustus and Glenmoriston Community Company

We are a community led organisation responsible for receiving and distributing windfarm monies. We give out grants to local groups and organisations with the aim of making our communities the best they can possibly be. We also undertake projects ourselves to ensure we can leave a legacy for the community once monies from the windfarms cease. This has included building and taking ownership of our new medical centre, as well as our current housing project, whereby we are building 12 new homes for the community.

Check out their website here.

Catherine Jones, Social Enterprise Director, Grassmarket Community Project

The Project takes an innovative approach to creating community, providing sanctuary and support to people dealing with multiple complex issues. These include homelessness, mental/physical health problems, learning difficulties, poverty, substance misuse, physical abuse and more. Through social enterprise, mentoring, education and support, the Project creates opportunities for those furthest from mainstream education and employment opportunities. Individuals develop skills and confidence, reconnect with themselves and their community, and improve their overall health and wellbeing.

Check out their website here.

Abdullah Razzouk, Director, Taza Bake Ltd

Taza Bake is a family business and the first Syrian flat bread manufacturer based in Scotland. Our bread is unique as it is delivered fresh with no preservative or additives and with 14 days shelf life.

Check out their website here.


Kelly Davies, Co-founder, Good Wash

The Good Wash Company is a luxury wash and lifestyle brand created in Wales, on a mission to change the world one wash at a time. A certified business with true purpose, and social impact at the heart of everything we do. We aim to improve the lives of people and animals by funding community projects; implementing social supply chains; and employing local people.

Check out their website here.

Chris Gillan, Managing Director, Heroes Drinks Company

As the world’s first not-for-profit alcohol producer, Heroes Drinks Company’s primary focus is to support the military community with donations from sales and employment/work placement programmes for veterans. In addition to our military charities, we are expanding our partner range to support other third sector organisations.

Check out their website here.

Angela Moohan, CEO, The Larder

The Larder survived the global pandemic and grew turnover and surplus in its most difficult year and for the third year in a row.  With 17 staff, we operate in the training and employability, and food service sectors as well addressing food insecurity with dignified meals.

Check out their website here.


Mairi Breslin, Director, Coorie Creative

Coorie Creative sells equipment and project kits to get people weaving. Modern weaving is creative, relaxing, and fun. Our looms are small and portable, and our kits take all the hassle out of getting set up. Make beautiful one-of-a-kind pieces for your home or your wardrobe.

Check out their website here.

Kirstie Campbell, Director, Sea Buckthorn Scotland

Seabuckthorn Scotland sustainably harvests local, wild plant material to produce delicious and nutritious raw juices and powerful skin care ingredients. We use the proceeds of sales to invest in research and development to help advocate for this little-known national treasure.

Check out their website here.


Angie de Vos, CEO, Women’s Business Station

Women’s Business Station is a social enterprise dedicated to increasing the socio-economic empowerment of women. We do this using the context of enterprise. Working collaboratively, we engage, equip, and enable women to start, build or grow a business regardless of their social and economic background. Our vision is to be ‘The first STOP to the Best Start’.

Check out their website here.

Nicky Francey, Services Manager, Re-tweed

We offer women a new way of looking at their future by providing innovative sewing skills training and developing a creative industry to inspire employability and entrepreneurship opportunities, breaking cycles of low aspiration and low self-esteem. We use fabrics diverted from landfill to create unique hand-crafted furnishings, fashion and homewares which we sell to support our work and which delivers a cycle of social, economic and environmental benefit.

Check out their website here.