New social ventures start with a good idea and these are found in abundance within Scotland’s Universities and Colleges.

Dr Eve Hepburn was an academic at the University of Edinburgh but after being accepted onto the Good Ideas incubator programme she made the bold decision to found Fearless Femme, a kick-ass online magazine that empowers young women to overcome stress and other emotional challenges, as she says:

“Good Ideas has literally changed my life. Being offered a place on Good Ideas at the end of 2016 gave me the confidence to pursue my idea, and with it, to pursue a radically different career. It made my idea – which had been nothing but a dream for over a year – more tangible and attainable. And the people in Good Ideas – peers and experts alike – gave me the support, skills, confidence and courage to start laying the foundations to make that dream come true.”

In the run up to this year’s Good Ideas incubator programme, The Melting Pot has been supporting university students as they explore their ideas for social change through our Catalyst workshops. The workshop provides the space and tools to explore the spark of an idea.

After an extremely successful event at Edinburgh University we are delighted that further workshops are being held at queen Margaret University and Edinburgh Napier.

Lorna Baird, Enterprise Development Executive – Social Enterprise at Edinburgh University at Good Ideas Marketplace

Lorna Baird, Enterprise Development Executive – Social Enterprise at Edinburgh University at Good Ideas Marketplace

Lorna Baird, Enterprise Development Executive – Social Enterprise at Edinburgh University says:

“It was great to be able to partner with Good Ideas to run our first ever social enterprise idea generation workshop here at the University. All our students were enthused and energised and have asked for more time to explore their social enterprise ideas further. We intend to run more workshops with Good Ideas in the very near future!”

Julie Ellam, Good Ideas Coordinator at The Melting Pot says:

“We’re really excited to be working with the universities. There is an energy when people come together and begin unpacking their idea. We are on the lookout for the next generation of social changemakers and can’t wait to hear about people’s good ideas.”

The Melting Pot’s Good Ideas programme is open for applications until 7 November 2018 and is looking to support new and emerging ventures, providing people with the opportunity to test out their ideas, turn them into action and make a real, long-term difference to society. Apply now at https://good-ideas.org/apply/.

Now in its seventh year Good Ideas nurtures new ideas that address social and environmental issues, providing space to test the idea, practical skills to enable startup, motivation and support through 1:1 coaching and peer support along with office space to work from.

Over the years, the programme has supported creative organisations such as music innovators Tinderbox Project and Vox Liminis; environmental enterprises such as The Edinburgh Remakery and Edinburgh Tool Library; and mental health initiatives such as Fearless Femme and Real Talk.