Quantcast
Connect with us

Actor Michael Sheen plans social enterprise to help Welsh hometown by ‘changing the world one business at a time’

Published

on

Hollywood star Michael Sheen has revealed he will shortly launch a community business to help his hometown in South Wales, declaring that social enterprises are “changing the world one business at a time.”

The actor, famous for his roles in the “Twilight Saga” and Oscar nominated film “Frost/Nixon”, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation he would start a community hub in Port Talbot, where threats to the steel industry have put jobs at risk.

ADVERTISEMENT

“Social enterprise is one of the most powerful and effective tools for changing the world,” Sheen said.

“I think it’s such a fantastic idea. We all complain about the state of the world. Well – we should do something about it.”

Social enterprises are businesses that address social or environmental problems.

The hub, expected to launch in 2018, will support people to start their own community-owned businesses and services.

ADVERTISEMENT

In a blog last year, Sheen denied a suggestion by the Times newspaper that he would quit acting for activism, but he admitted that he might work less as an actor as he had got more involved with community issues in Wales.

“Social enterprise is one of those tools for communities that want to create their own opportunities, like where I come from in the South Wales valleys,” Sheen told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

Port Talbot is home to Britain’s biggest steelworks, employing 4,000 people, but jobs are under threat amid merger talks between India’s Tata Steel and Germany’s Thyssenkrupp.

ADVERTISEMENT

The actor, whose film roles have included former British Prime Minister Tony Blair and outspoken football manager Brian Clough, said he became attracted to social enterprise because it seemed such a sensible idea.

“It goes beyond party politics or ideology. You’ve got everything that people who believe in capitalism like, which is making profit and a business model that has to work, but then it’s what you do with the money that is important,” he said.

”In social enterprise the money is invested in a social mission so it’s about business helping communities, helping people who are vulnerable.

ADVERTISEMENT

“It’s taking responsibility for the environment that you’re in, the community that you’re in, the people that work for you.”

“WE ALL WIN”

Britain is recognized as a global leader in the social enterprise industry, with 70,000 such businesses contributing 24 billion pounds ($32 billion) to the British economy and employing nearly 1 million people, according to industry body Social Enterprise UK.

ADVERTISEMENT

Sheen was speaking after hosting an awards ceremony this week for Social Enterprise UK, which saw the top prize go to Here, a Brighton-based business offering community healthcare.

Other winners included Change Please, a team of formerly homeless coffee sellers, Auticon, a business run by autistic consultants offering IT services, and a mobile dental service for those who find it difficult to get to a dentist.

“The many nominees and winners show us that you can put people and society before profit and be a successful business,” Sheen said in a statement ahead of the London ceremony.

“When they win, we all win.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Sheen said he wanted to help educate people about social businesses to try to keep wealth within communities which could be empowered as a result.

“One of the problems is that not enough people understand what social enterprise is or what it can do. I have a voice and I can get out there and let people know and come up with ideas,” he said.


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Facebook

Scientists shed light on how brains turn pain up or down

Published

on

Pain perception is essential for survival, but how much something hurts can sometimes be amplified or suppressed: for example, soldiers who sustain an injury in battle often recall not feeling anything at the time.

A new study published in Cell Reports on Tuesday honed in on the brain circuitry responsible for upgrading or downgrading these pain signals, likening the mechanism to how a home thermostat controls room temperature.

Yarimar Carrasquillo, the paper's senior author and a scientist for the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH), told AFP the region responsible was the central amygdala, which according to her work appeared to play a dual role.

Continue Reading

Facebook

US House passes Hong Kong ‘Democracy Act’

Published

on

The US House of Representatives passed a bill Tuesday sought by pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong that aims to defend civil rights in the semi-autonomous territory, prompting an angry response from China.

The Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act, which will now move to the Senate before it can become law, has drawn rare bipartisan support in a polarized Congress.

The law would end the Hong Kong-US special trading status unless the State Department certifies annually that city authorities are respecting human rights and the rule of law.

China expressed "strong indignation" over the passing of the act, which also requires the US president to identify and sanction people who are responsible for the erosion of autonomy and serious abuses of human rights in Hong Kong.

Continue Reading
 

2020 Election

Rising star Warren weathers attacks at Democratic White House debate

Published

on

Surging White House hopeful Elizabeth Warren faced a barrage of attacks from fellow Democrats at the party's fourth 2020 debate Tuesday, cementing her status as a frontrunner in the race to challenge Donald Trump.

The president himself loomed large as the dozen Democratic contenders trained their fire on him, calling for his impeachment and assailing a Syria troop pullout that Joe Biden slammed as "shameful."

"The impeachment must go forward," thundered Warren, the progressive senator who is neck and neck with former vice president Biden at the head of the 2020 nomination race -- a stance loudly echoed by her fellow Democrats on stage.

Continue Reading
 
 
Help Raw Story Uncover Injustice. Join Raw Story Investigates for $1 and go ad-free.
close-image