KAL receives recognition for social enterprise
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KAL receives recognition for social enterprise

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Kirklees Active Leisure (KAL) has been awarded a prestigious mark in recognition of its status as a social enterprise for its social and environmental good works.

KAL, which runs sports centres and swimming pools on behalf of Kirklees Council, can now proudly display the Social Enterprise Mark, which identifies the charitable trust as trading for social and environmental purposes, in its centres and on its literature.

It becomes only the third organisation in Kirklees to be able to display the Mark, alongside social enterprise companies Electroville in Dewsbury and Fresh Horizons in Huddersfield.

The Social Enterprise Mark is the brand for social enterprises, launched on February 1 last year. The Mark identifies businesses which meet defined criteria for social enterprise, and consumers will recognise that businesses displaying the Mark are trading to benefit people and planet.

KAL joins other well-known ethical businesses that have been recognised by being awarded the Mark such as the Eden Project, Big Issue, the Phone Coop and the Co-operative Group.

KAL's Chief Executive Alasdair Brown said: "We're very proud to have been awarded the Social Enterprise Mark.

"KAL is absolutely committed to the principles of good social enterprises - providing high quality services for local people, delivered in a business-like manner, but with all surpluses reinvested back into those services and not passed on to shareholders or owners outside the local area.

"When it works effectively a social enterprise should aim to provide the best aspects of public and private sector delivery combined and this is something that we constantly strive to achieve in KAL.

"We are proud to be associated with organisations such as Electroville and Fresh Horizons who do so much good within the community."

Government data estimates that there are 62,000 social enterprises across the UK, contributing £24billion to the economy and employing around 800,000 people.

Recent research found that social enterprises are twice as confident of growth compared to typical small to medium enterprises (SMEs), with 48 per cent of social enterprises saying they are positive about the future as opposed to just 24 per cent of SMEs (The Social Enterprise Coalition's State of Social Enterprise Survey, 2009).

Social enterprises are working to make a difference across the UK and beyond, but not enough people know what they are or how they work. The Social Enterprise Mark aims to raise awareness of what social enterprises do in order to get more people to buy from, engage with, start up and work for social enterprises.

Lucy Findlay, Managing Director, Social Enterprise Mark Company, said: "With more and more opportunities opening up every day for social enterprises to deliver health services, the Social Enterprise Mark has an important role to play in helping people understand when their health provider is genuinely socially motivated.

"The Social Enterprise Mark will be available across the country and we hope it's as successful as Fairtrade, in helping people buy in a more ethical way."

Photograph: from left, Tony Hood of Fresh Horizons, Colin Harrison of Electroville and Alasdair Brown from KAL.

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Kirklees Active Leisure (KAL) has been awarded a prestigious mark in recognition of its status as a social enterprise for its social and environmental good works.
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