Doncaster Refurnish recognised for social enterprise work

AN organisation that provides discarded furniture to disadvantaged prople has won £10,000 in a regional social enterprise competition.

Doncaster Refurnish was awarded the prize at The Key Fund’s Top Ten Social Enterprise Awards.

The awards mark The Key Fund’s tenth anniversary since its first loan and were hosted at a celebratory event at the Magna Science Museum.

The Key Fund, a social enterprise itself, is Britain’s largest regional community development finance institution. 

The Top Ten enterprises were chosen from across different sectors including childcare, leisure, health, arts and renewable energy.

Bradford’s Action for Business took the second prize of £3,000. Leeds Create was in third and was awarded £2,000.

Doncaster Refurnish has made 13,309 collections of bulky household waste, received 125 shipments of retailer waste, diverted 504 tonnes from landfill and supported 10,500 individuals and families with the proceeds so far this financial year.

In addition, the work has provided 11 former offender work placements and 79 training work placements for the long-term unemployed, engaged 149 students and pupils in educational activities, and supported 150 children through its annual ‘Spirit of Christmas’ event.

Matt Smith, fund manager at The Key Fund, said: “Refurnish is a truly entrepreneurial social enterprise which combines the delivery of social, environmental, and economic targets.

“It’s not just about helping its employees, it makes a significant impact on local people who are in dire financial straits, developing new services so they don’t fall into the murky world of loan sharks and other illegal activities.”