Social Enterprise Spotlight - Arkbound Foundation

Press Release

By Social Enterprise Scotland

Our newest Social Enterprise Spotlight is Steven McNaught and Arkbound Foundation. Read and share their Q&A interview below! Get in contact with Steve on  steven@arkbound.com.

What’s your social and/or environmental mission?

To provide opportunities for accessing the world of literature and journalism for people from disadvantaged backgrounds, whilst supporting books that create positive change.

How do you do it? (client group, practical daily work, customers etc)

We provide workshops and mentoring for people who want to get into literature and journalism - whether it be joining an existing outlet, writing a book or starting their own outlet. At the same time we can sponsor books by people from disadvantaged backgrounds that cover important social or environmental themes.

What’s your personal motivation for being a social entrepreneur?

I know what it's like to come from a position of disadvantage and negative stereotyping, exacerbated by a media that covers issues according to proprietor's vested interests and a publishing industry that is hard to access for anyone who doesn't come from a privileged position. There is a wealth of insights and skills out there if both these industries become more diverse, accountable and responsible for the power they hold.

What are your current projects?

Working with people with experience of imprisonment, drug abuse and homelessness to produce an anthology of stories - following on from the success of 'No Homeless Problem' in partnership with the Emmaus homelessness charity. Also looking at ways to get more sponsored books published and on shop shelves, as well as featured at literature events.

What exciting things do you have coming up?

Launching a new crowd-publishing platform that will make it easier for people to gather support for publishing a book but without huge costs and nigh-impossible expectations.

Who do you want to work with more?

Those who feel totally disenfranchised from 'the system', who have lost so much hope that they don't even try anymore. To bring back empowerment and a sense of voice to these people, so that they go on to do great things, is the best achievement.

What's your biggest challenge?

Tackling systematic injustice and inequity in larger structures, such as the social investment model that has developed from the last PM's 'Big Society' vision. Most support and finance is going to the top tiers and intermediaries, very little to the grassroots organisations.

What top tips would you give to other social enterprises?

Network, don't lose faith in what you are doing, and never give up!

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