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Carlisle Business Centre's group delighted at top ten status
The organisation which runs the Carlisle Business Centre has been shortlisted as one of Yorkshire’s Top Ten Social Enterprises.
Manningham-based Action for Business (Bradford) Ltd could receive thousands of pounds of funding if it reaches the top three at an awards ceremony held by The Key Fund – an influential investor of social enterprise – on Thursday, October 25, in Leeds.
Special guests at the ceremony will include MP David Blunkett, former Apprentice Claire Young, and Isobel Mills, the head of the Government’s Big Society Strategy Team. ABL chief executive Sam Keighley said that the organisation was thrilled to be nominated and get into the top ten. It bought the business centre from Bradford Council in 2003 and it is now home to 50 businesses, charities, social enterprises and statutory agencies, employing more than 300 people.
She said: “The Key Fund has helped address disadvantage and discrimination in a practical and lasting way. It stimulates local economies in deprived areas backing projects that mainstream banks just wouldn’t touch. The continued success of ABL and the transformation of Manningham are testament to the spirit of what can be achieved, with the right support and belief.
“The Key Fund believed in us, and supported us.
“This is a fantastic achievement and we are really excited by it. We really encourage organisations that are delivering community benefits.
“ABL is proof that you can change perceptions and the outlook of a disadvantaged and deprived area.”
ABL was established in 1992 to support economic development and social cohesion in Manningham which is part of Bradford West.
Bradford West has suffered the steepest year-on-year rise of unemployment of any UK Parliamentary constituency, according to figures released in August.
Up to 25,000 visitors a year attend events at the centre. Profits by ABL are ploughed back into projects to support the community including the establishment of a volunteer Doulas programme for expectant mothers to help give their babies the best possible start in life. In Bradford infant mortality is 30 per cent higher than the national average.
Last year the fund invested £11,000 to support ABL in the Doulas programme.