Kindred: the story so far

It’s been a whirlwind first 18 months for Kindred, since we began amidst the panic and confusion of lockdown in March 2020. Since then we have supported our first group of 22 STOs with a commitment of almost £1m, alongside support, advice and shared expertise – but we have also convened a community in Liverpool City Region of over 500 socially-trading organisations; entrepreneurial individuals and people who want to contribute to a kinder, fairer local economy.

As a result of that first phase of activity, we’ve put together our first evaluation. We’ve looked at Kindred’s aims, pre-pandemic, and the needs, hopes and ambitions of the community of STOs that co-created it with us. It’s been a chance to capture the story of the first part of our Kindred journey, to share it widely with our community of STOs, partners, stakeholders, networks and supporters – across LCR and beyond. It’s a tool for and anyone who is interested in finding out more about Kindred.

A number of themes have become recognisable as a result. We have created a shared vision for a different type of local economy, and built a team to deliver the needs of our community of STOs. There is a genuine commitment to involving excluded communities, and we are challenging issues around diversity and gender. Our first cohort is a diverse group, spread widely across the city region, operating in a huge variety of areas. But all deliver social value to their local community.

There is a sense of real expertise being shared, and we have convened a sector that now knows itself as a sector – a vibrant, growing sector of the LCR economy and different to mainstream social enterprise or the voluntary sector. It’s a sector that can grow successfully, can collaborate and attract more to join the movement. We also see new thinking and an alternative vision beginning to emerge for our local economy, which questions the purpose of growth and the necessity to trade, alongside leveraging grant funding.

To find out more, download a copy of our evaluation.

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