Three organisations win President's Challenge Social Enterprise Award

The Social Enterprise of the Year award went to two winners - Bliss Restaurant & Catering and community healthcare provider Sata CommHealth. Bettr Barista, a coffee academy which helps women from disadvantaged backgrounds and youth-at-risk, won Social Enterprise Start-Up of the Year. Besides coffee-making skills, Bettr Barista's training course includes emotional empowerment and physical skills training to help students boost their self-esteem.

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Here is the press release in full:

The 2013 President's Challenge Social Enterprise Award (PCSEA) unveiled its top winners at the Istana this evening. Bliss Restaurant & Catering Pte Ltd, and SATA CommHealth were awarded the "Social Enterprise of the Year" while Bettr Barista Pte Ltd was named the "Social Enterprise Start-Up of the Year" for their outstanding contributions made to the community.

The three winners are the recipients of the only award conferred by the President's Office for the social enterprise sector in Singapore. The other six shortlisted social enterprises received Commendations in recognition of their praiseworthy efforts in creating social impact within the society while striving to achieve a sustainable business (refer to Annex A for the list of winners and Annex B for the descriptions of all nine social enterprises). Presenting them with their awards was Guest-of-Honour President Tony Tan Keng Yam.

This year, PCSEA received a total of 38 submissions from a diverse range of social enterprises. The Award also drew in the participation of several capacity builders and enablers for other social impact organisations, as well as co-operatives which provide thrift and loans to their members. In 2012, social enterprises operating on the employment-focused model made up the majority of the nominations. Another encouraging trend observed was the increase in the number of youth category nominations and younger entrepreneurs in the start-up category, thus reflecting the rising interest in social entrepreneurship among youth.

Ms Low Yen Ling, Parliamentary Secretary for Social and Family Development, said, "I am very heartened to see more entrepreneurs taking the lead in creating sustainable impact in the community through innovative ideas. These ideas have given new meaning to how we can make a positive difference for a better Singapore. The winning social enterprises have demonstrated excellence in using their entrepreneurial skills as a tool for social good. I hope that more of us can come forward in a similar fashion - to do business not purely for profits, but to do business with a social purpose. I also urge all of us to support these businesses with a heart, and to join hands with them to create an even bigger social impact in our society."

he social enterprises' win will see them being rewarded with cash prizes of up to $15,000, as well as corporate advisory support from leading organisations. These organisations include Bain and Company, DBS Bank, Keppel Group, Philosophy Brand Consultants and The Law Society of Singapore's Pro Bono Services Office, as well as Credit Suisse which recently came on-board. They will provide pro-bono services to the winners and commendations, and work with them to develop their professional capabilities in areas such as business, law, marketing, and financing.

Organised by the Ministry of Social and Family Development, the 2013 PCSEA was open for nominations from May to July 2013. This year, the Award had broadened its scope to include social enterprises which operate and create social impact by addressing social needs in Singapore, so as to recognise a wider community of social entrepreneurs and encourage more to make an impact in the society through various means. The Award was established last year, and seeks to recognise outstanding social enterprises for their contributions made to the local community.

2013 PCSEA Award Winners and Commendations

Social Enterprise of the Year

Bliss Restaurant & Catering Pte Ltd

SATA CommHealth

Social Enterprise of the Year (Commendation)

NTUC FoodFare Co-operative Ltd

Social Enterprise Start-Up of the Year

Bettr Barista Pte Ltd

Social Enterprise Start-Up of the Year (Commendation)

Empact Pte Ltd

The HUB Singapore Pte Ltd

Youth Social Enterprise of the Year (Commendation)

Circus In Motion LLP

Conjunct Consulting (Singapore) Ltd

The Chain Reaction Project Limited