WISE MANAGER AWARD

On the 26th of November 2020, in the framework of the European Social Economy events “The digital road to Mannheim’, the European Network of Social Integration Enterprises (ENSIE announced the winner of the 2020 ‘WISE Manager Award’. An in person ceremony took place on Septembre 21st 2021 in Brussels in the framework of the celebration of ENSIE 20th anniversary

The main objective of the Award has been to underline the innovativeness and resilience of WISEs in times of the COVID-19 crisis. A jury of experts from the European Parliament, the European Commission and working in the social economy sector evaluated applications according to several factors as the innovation and adaptability, the impact on workers and the transferability of the WISE practices.

The winning participants are managers the following enterprises :

PACE Social Enterprise from Ireland that provides people that have experienced prison or probation with job opportunities;

Humana Nova which is a Croatian WISE working in the production and sales of textile products made from recycled fabrics employing people with disabilities and people disadvantaged;

Milieuwerk from The Netherlands which acts as an intermediary between vulnerable people and big corporates by providing them with suitable work places. 

This has been a short but very exciting award ceremony with a brilliant moderator, Chris Gordon from ISEN, the participation of Sylvie Guillaume, French member of the European Parliament, Ann Branch, chief of unit in the DG Employment of the European Commission, together with Corine van de Burgt, ENSIE’s President. 

ll these convinced and engaged people are the big motivation of our daily work which consists of finding more support and promotion for all WISEs and their workers! 

Finally, this Award is organised in collaboration with RREUSE, Social Firms Europe CEFEC and the CEC, and also granted in the framework of the “European Social Economy Award” in collaboration with Social Economy Europe and REVES.

A common award ceremony is planned to be organised  at the next year’s European Social Economy Summit in Mannheim and we will wait for all of you, together, to celebrate WISEs and their managers!

WISE Manager Award 2020 - The finalists and their good practices

PACE Social Enterprise

PACE Social Enterprise opened in 2014 when they started making street planters and benches for local government. Over the years, they grew the customer base to include schools, creches, etc.

Their objective is to create jobs for people who have experienced prison or probation and have difficulties to be employed. Their goal is to prepare people for progressing into mainstream employment and to positively help change the attitudes of potential employers and communities towards former prisoners. At PACE, they support workers and focus on the personal development side and help them to stay away from re-offending and relapsing but also to reconnect with family.

When Covid-19 hit, they managed to adapt to the situation through an online shop and social media to drive a marketing campaign, reach the consumer and sell flower window boxes, small garden planters and summer bedding flowers online. This worked and they have managed to keep all workers employed and they look good going into 2021!

They also have the MugShot which is a mobile coffee cart servicing “coffee with character”. The MugShot coffee cart gives people the opportunity to work full-time earning a decent wage while learning how to run a business.

Humana Nova

Humana Nova Cakovec is a non-profit social cooperative which has been dedicated to find sustainable solutions for two society challenges: irresponsible waste management and exclusion of disadvantaged and disabled people from the labour market. They produce and sell textile products made from recycled fabrics. All their operations are adapted to include vulnerable people who have then access to training courses that helps them to improve their self-confidence and quality of life.

By hiring people with disabilities (21/37) and other marginalised groups (11/37), they are promoting social inclusion, develop and validate work integration models and take care of the environment.

In addition, Humana Nova is a cooperative where workers have the right and the responsibility to be equally involved in business decisions.

Humana Nova was untouched by the Covid-19 crisis and even employed 7 new employees this summer! They also invested 140.000 EUR in adapting and moving their branch to new and bigger working space.

Milieuwerk

Milieuwerk is an employer and a social enterprise that acts as an intermediary between the productive labour potential of people with a vulnerable labour market position and the demand for low-skilled labour in the circular economy, facility services, transport and logistics sectors.

Their mission is "social impact first"!

Collaboration with Milieuwerk enables disadvantaged people to enter the traditional labor market. The organisation signs long-term contracts with corporates that have work places in the circular economy. Thanks to these contracts, Milieuwerk has the possibility to place people outside in these companies after having trained them inside. In order to ensure sustainable work, Milieuwerk remains their employer.

At this moment Milieuwerk is copying its business model to the hospitality sector in collaboration with the large corporate HEINEKEN Nederland !

Since 2014, they have grown from 30 to more than 110 employees in 2020!

You can find here a video presenting their work. 

Ensie

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