Tackling Social Issues Through Business

What sets a business apart? In today’s world, consumer behaviour is exceedingly shifting as we move towards a more socially and environmentally conscious era.

Due to social media advancements and websites such as WikiLeaks, business reputations are also held at a more fragile state with instant video reviews and social media influencers’ reach. It is now simply not enough for a business goal to be centred on making profits, a business must set itself apart and business leaders must show a social and environmental conscience by adopting an ethical strategy.

Newable has social value embedded in its core. Not only do we aspire to create social impact through our work of supporting small businesses, many of our programmes are focused on enabling small businesses to create wider social impact themselves.

The UN has identified various key Global Challenges including Education, Healthcare, Urban and Rural Communities. Our advice team has been supporting innovators to take on these challenges and more. Below are stories of how the SMEs we support have successfully built businesses which create a positive social impact.

BeGenio: Education

Grace, Founder of BeGenio explains the mission behind BeGenio and how they have been trying to tackle social issues:

“In this day and age, it is imperative that more businesses start to take on social issues. In our case we saw a problem in the Education and EdTech Industry where there was a need, as well as a way to fill that gap and sustain the business.

Through my experience, I’ve realised there are three key problems.

  1. Many children hate Maths, don’t see the point in doing it, or find it a boring chore.
  2. Don’t believe they can get good at it. Usually because they’ve been inadvertently told that by a parent or a teacher.
  3. Do not have effective, creative, fun methods of doing maths.

Sadly, many children experience low self-esteem and low self-confidence as a result, which can affect their life and future; and can easily lead on to Mathematical Anxiety.

Many parents are afraid of maths themselves and don’t know how to help their children. The world is a lot more competitive and demanding now, and this generation is finding it harder to do well or get good jobs without maths.  Also, Government statistics show that half the adults in the UK have numeracy levels no greater than that of an 11-year old. This is costing our economy £20 billion a year. We are all paying for this.

The key is to catch them young. To solve these problems, I have created a programme incorporating the notion of play learning. This program motivates children to do maths with stress free, creative, fun and stimulating methods. At the CORE of it, is the Race to Infinity game that I created to bring fun to maths and reduce maths anxiety, alongside my online hub, the book I authored titled “Make Maths Fun”, stories, workshops, consultations, and maths shortcuts videos.

I created the Race to Infinity game because I wanted to create a game that would be different, with true replay-ability and deep play value. I wanted to create one that would bring children to want to come back and play it over and over again.

Our Race to Infinity maths game is making a difference to how children, and even parents view maths, making children happier, parents worry less and teachers’ jobs easier.”

PedalHub: Urban and Rural Communities

PedalHub is a community bike share programme which aims to create a shift in people’s attitude towards cycling, and transform the UK into a cycling nation, whilst also aiming to achieve a net reduction of greenhouse gases emission in the transport sector.

An interesting survey by CyclingUK concluded that 1 in 3 people who participated would choose electric cycling if it is available in a shared system.

The environmental and health benefits of cycling are enormous and there is a huge wave of awareness among people in recent times. Now, even the NHS will be prescribing cycling to people as it has recognised the overall health benefits of regular cycling. Many people are approaching cycle stores across the UK and returning only with disappointment to see that they do not have much stock left to buy due to the unprecedented demand for bikes. Though the government is already making efforts to expand bike lanes with a few billion pounds investment, there is a global shortage with some resellers asking customers to wait up to 1 year. A solution to bridge this gap is necessary!

A study by COMOUK in 2020 revealed that even reluctant riders are starting to use bikes when they are available in a bike-sharing system. 46% of all those surveyed hadn’t cycled for at least a year.

Implementing an overall solution to reduce vehicular pollution in cities and towns that are addicted to cars is not very easy, but possible. An innovative solution to include people and communities into a bike-sharing system will provide cheaper local transportation and cut down short trips made by cars – hence ‘PedalHub Community Bike-sharing’. Bikes owned by people in the community will be pooled into their system and will be made available for sharing with others in the community, making a huge community-owned fleet.  If backed by the government, this project will change people’s attitudes towards cycling and serve as a backbone for the green transition.

Newable’s commitment

At Newable we mirror PedalHub’s ambitions to a greener future and encourage our staff to take up our company offer of the Cycle to Work scheme. The Cycle to Work scheme’s limit has also been increased from the previous £1000 to £2500 as a step towards encouraging the Newable community to cycle to work.