Pitch Perfect: The Circle Academy celebrates 2020’s participating Social Entrepreneurs

Cohort 3 of The Circle Academy commenced on the 17th of September 2020 after 6 months of what can only be described as COVID-related chaos. It was an immense victory for us to be able to pilot the first ever fully digital Academy programme, with a brand new Academy Manager, a purpose built online learning platform and eight existing or aspiring social business leaders along for the ride.

Continue reading

Squaring The Circle on Funding Applications with Kirsty Thomson

The world of funding can be complex to navigate and if you don’t know what funders are looking for it can make it difficult to get the funding your organisation or project needs. Acquiring funding is particularly important for many organisations at the moment to plug the gaps in cash flows and to allow them to adapt their way of working in response to the covid-19 crisis. Join Founder and CEO of The Circle, Kirsty Thomson for a webinar where she’ll be covering what you need to know about the world of funding.

Continue reading

New opportunity to join our thriving community

We know times are hard just now during this challenging period of uncertainty. For many, our working spaces have become dining room tables, the edge of the bed or our living room. There’s plenty to enjoy about the flexibility of working from home, but we’ve found that as more people begin to safely return to their offices, they come to realise what they were missing: other people!

Continue reading

Funded spaces available for The Circle Academy cohort 3

We are thrilled to be able to offer a limited number of funded spaces on cohort 3 of The Circle Academy for people who fit into any of these three categories:

  • Individual business owners who have found themselves on Universal Credit or low income as a result of pandemic who need support to pivot and grow sustainably in 2021
  • Individuals with additional support needs
  • Young entrepreneurs in the Dundee postcode area (Aged 16-24)
Continue reading

You’ve heard of Social Enterprise but what does ‘More Than Profit’ mean?

From pay it forward schemes to eco friendly products, to cafes that employ individuals with additional needs, chances are you’ve know of a social enterprise or interacted with one in some way.

It was around 10 years ago that Toms, the shoe brand, hit high streets with their promise to give a pair of shoes for each one that was purchased. and it was the first time in my memory at least that a big brand had social impact built into their business model.

Continue reading

A statement from Kirsty about COVID-19

Over the last week I have been self-isolating due a stomach bug and some flu like symptoms.

I’ve been thinking very carefully about how we should respond to the dramatic impact that the coronavirus has been having on communities across the UK.

I’m sure you have seen the news with the governments call for the closure of cafes and leisure facilities due to the horrendous pandemic that is COVID-19. Many of our tenants, as well as other charities, social enterprises and businesses are under insurmountable pressure and many will not survive.

Following UK government guidelines we will be closing the doors of The Circle temporarily from today Monday 23rd March 2020 after just over 3 years from opening our doors.

Continue reading

Our new Digital Learning Producer, Alice

Last week I joined the team here at The Circle as Digital Learning Producer on an internship through The Rank Foundation’s Time to Shine programme. My role will be to assist Kara, the Academy Manager, in delivering The Circle Academy, alongside producing a digital platform for future cohorts of the Academy to use as an additional resource. 

I arrived in Dundee in August last year, and with an existing interest in social enterprise, I was keen to dive into the More Than Profit scene here in Dundee. I was delighted to discover the quantity and rich variety of socially and environmentally focused businesses and organisations creating change in the city. I’ve been lucky enough to spend time volunteering at Dundee’s first zero waste shop as well as meeting several inspiring leaders and social entrepreneurs. 

Continue reading

Goodbye Nicola! A ‘few’ words on three years spent developing a start-up social enterprise

Our Business Development Officer, Nicola Donnelly, leaves us this week after three years at The Circle. She is moving on to a new role at Carolina House Trust as Marketing and Recruitment Officer. Before she left, we grabbed a ‘few’ words about her time at The Circle and what she has learned.


The first time Kirsty gave me a tour of the building that became The Circle, I was more than a little wary. It was huge, dark and very, very empty. What did compel me, was the potential. And Kirsty’s vision. To turn such a sad, sprawling centre of redundant employment training into a buoyant, bustling and productive hub for the community. The particulars changed as we tried and tested different services that would lead us to the goal but enabling people and organisations to thrive remained at the centre of our endeavors.

Continue reading