Healthcare social enterprises gain national recognition

NAViGO Health and Social Care Community Interest Company, a new social enterprise providing mental health services to communities across North East Lincolnshire has won two Philip Baxendale Awards for Excellence in Employee Ownership. 

Kevin Bond, chief executive of NAViGO, said: “I am thrilled that after just seven months as a not for profit Community Interest Company that we have won not one but two prestigious awards thanks to the innovative way we have been set up and work. 

“Our members are at the heart of our organisation, helping us run services as well as make important decisions, a truly unique way of doing things. They include services users and carers.   Why wouldn’t you want to include the people who know your services best in helping to run the enterprise?”

The Public Sector Employee-Led Mutual Organisation (ELMO) Award is a new category for this year.  The Baxi Partnership and Employee Ownership Association, who sponsor the awards, wanted to officially recognise social enterprises that have spun-out of the public sector and are demonstrating progress in transforming their services to improve outcomes for their service users. 

Competition was stiff.  All three finalists were new health social enterprises, set up through the Department’s Right to Request scheme.  The two runners up were Social adVentures Limited, a health and well-being centre in Salford and City Health Care Partnership, based in Hull, providing a range of community services.

NAViGO were given the ELMO award in recognition of a service called Tukes, which provides training, skills development and work experience in real working environments for people who are socially excluded due to mental health problems.  Tukes run all of NAViGO’s ancillary services including catering, cleaning, portering, estates and horticulture.

They also won the Employee Ownership Rising Star Award in recognition of the culture they have created, where employees have meaningful ownership of the organisation.

Bob Ricketts, Director of Provider Policy said “I would like to offer my warm congratulations to NAViGO, it’s a fantastic achievement. This award recognises that social enterprises have the freedom and flexibility to develop different services to meet patients’ needs, as well as creating a culture where staff can truly influence the organisation”.

Tukes, part of NAViGO, has also been declared the overall winner of The Guardian Public Service Awards 2011.

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