A record number of business volunteers helped social enterprises grow through Social Business Trust (SBT) in the last year.

The news was announced at a celebration event for SBT volunteers and the social enterprises they support, hosted by SBT corporate partner, EY, last night

SBT CEO Adele Blakebrough MBE told guests that the number of volunteers from SBT’s corporate partners sharing their business expertise had risen by 58% on the previous year.

Together in 2017/18, they gave 6,000 hours of high-quality business support to SBT and some of the UK’s top social enterprises, working to address educational disadvantage, elderly isolation and other areas of pressing social need. They include London Early Years Foundation, The Challenge and User Voice.

With that assistance, attendees heard that the social enterprises in SBT’s portfolio have now helped nearly two million people since SBT began in 2010.  “We’re making incredible progress towards our goal of helping three million by the end of 2021. Bringing together the best of business and the best of social enterprise changes lives, ” Adele said.

She added that Volunteering Reinvented, a new guide launched at the event, shows how SBT’s collaborative approach helps businesses too: “They benefit from new learnings, new perspectives and new relationships. So they get a return on their investment and make a stronger contribution to society.”

During the evening, awards were given to ‘heroes’ from corporate partners Bain & Company, Clifford Chance. EY, Permira and Thomson Reuters who made an outstanding contribution to SBT, often behind the scenes, in the last year. Quidnunc were also thanked for their support.

The awards were presented by new SBT Chair Larissa Joy (pictured above with award winners), who said  she was inspired to see the difference made by SBT and the excellent social enterprises it is helping to scale-up.