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Ingenuity provides an opportunity for entrepreneurs and community innovators to come together to explore key challenges facing society.

Below are just some examples of the successful recipients of our programme.


Foodprint is Nottingham’s first social supermarket and a surplus food redistribution network.

We are a social enterprise started by students, acting as an intermediary between supermarkets, wholesalers, charities and the people of Nottingham to redistribute food. We also sell surplus at a greatly reduced price through our low-cost social supermarket in Sneinton.

The funding from Ingenuity enabled us to launch our supermarket, and become a financially independent, stable organisation.


Key successes

  • Over 700 people benefit a week through the supermarket.
  • 132,921kg equilvalent of CO2 saved by taking on food that would otherwise end up in landfill.
  • Secured partnerships with Hovis Bakery and local Tesco stores.
hand with a red love heart drawn on it

Hey Girls

We created Hey Girls to offer a no leak, super comfy, chlorine and bleach free, environmentally friendly product that tackles period poverty in the UK. How? Well that’s simple – all the profits from our Buy One Give One products go directly to help girls and young women in need.

We seek to enrich the lives of girls and young women in the UK by exercising social and ethical responsibility in every aspect of our work – from where we source our products through to our supply chain, and the way we run our social business.

We wouldn’t have been able to scale up Hey Girls without the support of Big Issue Invest, through Power Up. Not even just the money but the mentoring, the training and the connections we’ve been able to make. With contracting advice, mentoring from top firms across the country, we’ve been able to become a more solid feeling organisation.


Key successes

  • Over 6 million period products donated.
  • Stocked in Co-op, ASDA and Waitrose stores.
  • A major supplier in the Scottish Government’s initative to provide access to free sanitary products to pupils and students in Scotland.
Group drawing a spider diagram on table

Think for the Future

Think for the Future was established to use a data-driven approach to tackle social and emotional barriers to learning.   

Our social mission is to reduce challenging behaviour in schools and therefore reduce exclusions from mainstream education, allowing an increase in positive behaviours and equipping for success in and outside of the classroom. 

We work in partnership with national organisations to provide schools with innovative solutions o ensure that young people reach their full educational potential.

Key successes

  • Recognised as one of Grant Thorton’s 100 Faces of a Vibrant Economy in 2018.
  • Working with over 50 schools. 
  • Secured partnerships with Teach First, the Young Foundation and UnLtd.
Kohl Kreatives model with cosmetics

Kohl Kreatives

Kohl Kreatives is an inclusive beauty brand and non-profit that aims to empower through make-up. We specialise in cosmetic creation of features lost through illness or accidents, as well helping transgender people who are transitioning.

Proceeds from make-up brush sales are invested into Kohl Kares, providing free make-up workshops internationally to help both men and women recreate features cosmetically. We teach them simple techniques to improve their self-esteem and help them reintegrate into society.

Being part of Ingenuity has been a great opportunity to build my business skills. Sometimes it has felt like you’re being thrown in at the deep end, but that’s often the best way to develop your skills! It’s amazing to be surrounded by people who are there to promote your business and support your growth in all the best ways.


Key successes

  • Created the world’s first standing make-up brush.
  • Brushes stocked in Boots, QVC, Birchbox and Wolf & Badger and other leading retailers.
  • Delivered Kohl Kares workshops to over 1,000 people in need.
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