The Fellows took over creative co-working space Camden Collective on 20th May for a night of revelry and stimulating social change chat. Beer Here, run in partnership with CELIA Lager, was inaugurated last year, this being its fourth incarnation. A capacity crowd of 120 young Londoners came together, lured by the promise of ice cold CELIA beers, aural treats from Stamp the Wax, meaty burgers from Up In My Grill and even meatier conversation. And the Evening Standard’s new 24hr TV channel, London Live – the first of its kind for the capital – was there to broadcast the action live to the rest of the city.
Beer Here is billed as a social event for anyone interested in social change, and ideally beer, but turned off by conventional networking events. We try to make it fun and informative – while avoiding anything stifling or contrived.
The centrepiece of the evening was a spotlight panel discussion around four key aspects of successful social enterprise: power, money, tech and design. We welcomed serial entrepreneur Jake Hayman to inform the audience about power. Alongside him, tech guru and ‘futurist’ Louise Armstrong enlightened us about tech and it’s future. Corporate Social Responsibility expert and former treasury man Chris Gorst made economics accessible alongside them, while social designer Zahra Davidson made up the panel with insights from the design world.
2013 Fellow, Louise Ellaway acted as chair, steering the discussion towards some of the biggest questions the social sector faces: how to achieve scale, whether sector stereotypes are a negative force, and how best to finance a social enterprise.
Last orders were reluctantly called soon after ten, and the stragglers were out before eleven. Pre-match nerves were replaced by post-match exhaustion, and a hopeful feeling that the night had been a success. Fingers crossed you enjoyed it as much as we did!
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