Social Enterprise Spotlight - Me Too!

Press Release

 

Our newest Social Enterprise Spotlight is Phionna McInnes-Pirie and Me Too!, a free quarterly magazine for families and carers of children with Additional Support Needs. Get in touch with Phionna at phionna@metoomagazine.org and check out www.metoomagazine.org. Connect with them on Twitter and Facebook too.
Every few weeks we focus on a randomly selected social enterprise member for intense marketing support and promotion. Me Too! will feature in all e-bulletins, on our website homepage and on all our social media, alongside other support, reaching thousands of people across Scotland and beyond. Want to star in the Spotlight? Email chris.mack@socialenterprisescotland.org.uk
What’s your social and/or environmental mission? Me Too! Magazine is a free quarterly magazine for families and carers of children with Additional Support Needs. It has diary events to show what is on as well as relevant articles, relevant advertisers and benefits advice all presented in a nice, glossy format that allows carers to connect and become informed about what’s available to them and their children in their area.
How do you do it? At the hub of Me Too! Is the magazine which is produced quarterly to coincide with the holidays and is distributed to schools, community centres, sports centres, libraries and relevant charity partners. However, we also run seasonal “Relaxed Events” for our target readers to allow them to undertake activities that may ordinarily be difficult for them to access. We also host a monthly “Me Too! Club” which allows the children to come together and play as well as the parents/carers to receive peer-to-peer support.
What’s your personal motivation for being a social entrepreneur? It needs done! As a parent of a child with Additional Support Needs myself, I became so frustrated with the disjointed information out there. Someone had to get out there and join up all the dots! I knew that as a community, we deserved a nice, good quality magazine full of useful articles and information.
What are your current projects? We have recently finished  two days of Accessible Surf School at Aberdeen Beach which allowed 20 children with various needs to get into the water with a qualified surf instructor and try surfing. Now it’s time for me to start putting together our “Not Too Spooky Halloween Party” which has reduced noise and lighting as many of our children have real sensory issues. We are hosting a fundraising ceilidh in October. Oh!  - I also have a magazine deadline looming for the Autumn edition!
What exciting things do you have coming up? Looking ahead, we have our Relaxed Santa event for Christmas. This year we will be able to host one both in Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire. For next year, we are going to showcase “Me Too! Show” which will be an opportunity for organisations to come together into one venue, where they can meet parents and carers to offer their goods and services, as well as relevant seminars and the Me Too! Awards. Given the success of Me Too! In Aberdeen City and Shire, the model is now about to roll out into Dundee and Angus as well as Moray and Nairn.
Who do you want to work with more? We want to work more with charities that are relevant to the children we support. With the magazine, we have created a vehicle that allows many of these charities to get right to their target audience. Readership for the magazine now sits at 28,500 in the North-East of Scotland and the resource is shared by professionals and families alike. I think many established charities are starting to see the value in the magazine and what we are achieving in such a short period of time.
What's your biggest challenge? I think the biggest challenge initially was to get people to understand the model of what I was trying to achieve and I was told there would be no appetite for such a magazine. However, I was being told this by professionals and my community was telling me differently. The positive feedback was more than I could have ever anticipated. I would say now, my biggest challenge is my work/life balance - when you feel so passionate about what you want to achieve, it’s easy to get sucked in and work really crazy hours!
What top tip would you give to other social enterprises? I think the top tip for me would be to trust your gut instinct and to just jump in!  From initial idea to the printing of the first magazine was just 10 weeks!   I know of many individuals who spend too.  After all the business plan is just a plan – it’s not rigid and there should be fluidity within it to allow you to move and meet the demands of your customers, after all they are the most important people to your organisation.

Our newest Social Enterprise Spotlight is Phionna McInnes and Me Too! a free quarterly magazine for families and carers of children with Additional Support Needs. Get in touch with Phionna at phionna@metoomagazine.org and check out www.metoomagazine.org. Connect with them on Twitter and Facebook too.


Every few weeks we focus on a randomly selected social enterprise member for intense marketing support and promotion. Me Too! will feature in all e-bulletins, on our website homepage and on all our social media, alongside other support, reaching thousands of people across Scotland and beyond. Want to star in the Spotlight? Email chris.mack@socialenterprisescotland.org.uk

What’s your social and/or environmental mission? Me Too! Magazine is a free quarterly magazine for families and carers of children with Additional Support Needs. It has diary events to show what is on as well as relevant articles, relevant advertisers and benefits advice all presented in a nice, glossy format that allows carers to connect and become informed about what’s available to them and their children in their area.

How do you do it? At the hub of Me Too! Is the magazine which is produced quarterly to coincide with the holidays and is distributed to schools, community centres, sports centres, libraries and relevant charity partners. However, we also run seasonal “Relaxed Events” for our target readers to allow them to undertake activities that may ordinarily be difficult for them to access. We also host a monthly “Me Too! Club” which allows the children to come together and play as well as the parents/carers to receive peer-to-peer support.

What’s your personal motivation for being a social entrepreneur? It needs done! As a parent of a child with Additional Support Needs myself, I became so frustrated with the disjointed information out there. Someone had to get out there and join up all the dots! I knew that as a community, we deserved a nice, good quality magazine full of useful articles and information.

What are your current projects? We have recently finished  two days of Accessible Surf School at Aberdeen Beach which allowed 20 children with various needs to get into the water with a qualified surf instructor and try surfing. Now it’s time for me to start putting together our “Not Too Spooky Halloween Party” which has reduced noise and lighting as many of our children have real sensory issues. We are hosting a fundraising ceilidh in October. Oh!  - I also have a magazine deadline looming for the Autumn edition!

What exciting things do you have coming up? Looking ahead, we have our Relaxed Santa event for Christmas. This year we will be able to host one both in Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire. For next year, we are going to showcase “Me Too! Show” which will be an opportunity for organisations to come together into one venue, where they can meet parents and carers to offer their goods and services, as well as relevant seminars and the Me Too! Awards. Given the success of Me Too! In Aberdeen City and Shire, the model is now about to roll out into Dundee and Angus as well as Moray and Nairn.

Who do you want to work with more?
We want to work more with charities that are relevant to the children we support. With the magazine, we have created a vehicle that allows many of these charities to get right to their target audience. Readership for the magazine now sits at 28,500 in the North-East of Scotland and the resource is shared by professionals and families alike. I think many established charities are starting to see the value in the magazine and what we are achieving in such a short period of time.

What's your biggest challenge? I think the biggest challenge initially was to get people to understand the model of what I was trying to achieve and I was told there would be no appetite for such a magazine. However, I was being told this by professionals and my community was telling me differently. The positive feedback was more than I could have ever anticipated. I would say now, my biggest challenge is my work/life balance - when you feel so passionate about what you want to achieve, it’s easy to get sucked in and work really crazy hours!

What top tip would you give to other social enterprises? I think the top tip for me would be to trust your gut instinct and to just jump in! From initial idea to the printing of the first magazine was just 10 weeks! The business plan is just a plan – it’s not rigid and there should be fluidity within it to allow you to move and meet the demands of your customers, after all they are the most important people to your organisation.

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