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New Year’s update!

Jennifer Bird • Jan 12, 2021 • 3 min read


We are well into the New Year here at Signalise and it is all pretty exciting! Our innovation heads are switched on and we’re also working on our people power, otherwise known as community engagement. Not easy in a pandemic but we are making every effort. We have some community training that we are working on, funded by last year’s Crowdfunder, and we’ll deliver this towards Spring.

January calendar with leafs

Bilingual Governance

We continue to work on our governance - the structure of the co-op and how we work as a group of members - and have completed our ByLaws. We are very grateful for the support we received from Power to Change. The running of a bilingual co-op is not easy but it’s what really sets us apart from other businesses that deliver interpreting and other communication services.

Platform

We are finishing off our prototype with the funding we received last year from the Paul Hamlyn Foundation. Due to the extra funds we raised in the Crowdfunder, we’ve been able to pay for an extra Web Developer so we can get the prototype done quicker. This has taken us much longer than we wanted due to the Covid-19 pandemic. But the pandemic has also given us new opportunities and we’ve been trading now for some time.

We’ve recruited someone to help us deliver the project that is being funded by Liverpool City Region, which is to add a video interpreting service and a dashboard to the platform. We are doing this in light of Covid-19 and making sure we can add value for health and social care services. We’ll also be doing some more exploratory work in understanding what we need to do next to make it as useful as possible for all users, including customers, as we work on increasing our trading income — booking referrals gratefully received!

Community Shares

Further work on the platform and expanding as a business takes more funding, which is where community shares comes in. We’ll be launching a share offer for the community to buy into around late February. This is your chance to buy into the business and become an investor. We want as many people locally to be able to buy shares in the business and we will need the national community of communication professionals and Deaf people to get behind us and invest into the future we are creating, one that is owned by us. We’ll also be looking at getting investors outside of the community to invest. In fact, anyone that can see the value in what we are doing to radically shake up what has been desperate for innovation and community ownership for some time.

New investors can bring many benefits as we grow as a business in a way where we all share ownership and get to contribute to a future of services that works for everyone involved.

We are aiming high, for monumental changes, and we need as many interested people to invest to get us there. First, we’ll be working to get the business established on Merseyside, to bring about those changes that services really need, for all of us. We do all of this knowing that in the longer term, we want to replicate the local community owned business model into more areas as soon as we can to bring about even bigger changes where our version of service delivery becomes the norm.

Watch this space!

To book a communication professional email bookings@signalise.coop or visit our Bookings page.

To donate visit our Donation page.

To volunteer, see our Get Involved page.

Helping hands high-fiving visual