News   >   Rank Accelerator Event 2018

Rank Accelerator Event 2018

29 May 2024   /   Natalie Kay

The Rank Foundation has now launched the annual Rank Accelerator Event in preparation for the annual conference, held in October.

Open to organisations that are members of RankNet, the Rank Accelerator Event  has a prize fund of £10,000 in support of enterprise.

Generating income and sustaining services has always been a key challenge for the sector and this has undoubtedly been harder in recent years. The Foundation wants to actively encourage all projects within RankNet to consider enterprise and to explore opportunities for generating both social impact and a financial return.

The Event is hosted at our conference, and shortlisted organisations are given the opportunity to pitch to the audience (approximately 220 attendees), and a panel of judges.

Past Winners

The Rank Accelerator Event has been running for a number of years. In 2016, the winner was chosen solely by the judges, but in 2017 (and with the birth of RankNet), an interactive voting system was put in place for the conference attendees to submit their choice of winner. This meant that in 2017, there was a judges winner, and an audience winner. Hover to view details of each event winner.

PEEK (Winners 2016)
Winning Idea: Pop Up Community Cinema

PEEK had been testing out free cinema experiences to disadvantaged families in the East-End of Glasgow. Families were known to not be able to afford going to the cinema together, as it has become far too expensive. PEEK identified that cinema brings a whole host of benefits to families, both educationally and socially. PEEK asked themselves: How could we make the programme sustainable, as PEEK pride themselves on free opportunities for families and young people?
The Accelerator Event was the perfect opportunity to ensure sustainability. After winning, PEEK employed an intern to get the business model prepared and marketed. They marketed to the private sector, creating four different cinema packages of varying costs. From this, 100% of profit goes back into the community pop up cinema programme. Ever since, the community cinema has continued, with young people taking ownership in planning and provision.

Anima Muslim Women Resource Centre – Judges Winner 2017
Winning Idea: Culinary Enterprise Initiative

Amina explained that to many Muslim women that used their services, ‘cooking and cleaning’ were their main skills. They recognised an opportunity to tap into the women’s talents, and pilot a culinary enterprise initiative. Complementing their innovative practical ‘business block’ model, funded by RBS Skills and Opportunities Fund, where women are supported to embark on an entrepreneurial journey experiencing brainstorming, product design and production, budgets and costings, marketing and selling, Amina proposed to run a pilot programme of six ‘Taste of . . . ‘ events, bringing home cooked, authentic dishes from across the globe to the people of Dundee.
The proposed programme intended to provide free training and offer work experience opportunities in administration, customer service and hospitality, equipping local Muslim and ME women with sought after UK experience in growing sectors, enhancing their employability prospects, boosting their confidence and challenging the negative stereotypes propagated by the media.
So far, Amina have run a “Taste of…” lunch (which was very successful), provided food hygiene training opportunities for 11 of their service users, hired a kitchen team leader, and gained lots of interest in the local community.

Centre 63 – Audience Winner 2017
Winning Idea: Remake Yourself Project

Centre 63 is based in the borough of Knowsley, which stands as the 5th most deprived Borough in England. Many residents face disproportionate repercussions from statutory funding cuts and benefit sanctions, so much of the community struggle to buy food, let alone buy furniture. The Remake Yourself Project aimed to create a hub that could divert waste from landfill, whilst supporting the skill development of young people and building their aspirations. The project would then offer sustainability to Centre 63 through the sale of upcycled furniture.
After co-winning the Rank Accelerator Event, Centre 63 has offered meaningful, skilled work to people in the local community via the following avenues: Upholstery courses engaging 12 volunteers with a passion for crafts, recycling and working for the good of the community; Design, Craft and Carpentry Workshops; Day care for the children of parents who are engaging with the sessions, so they can engage in social contact with others who are in similar positions; and an Earn Furniture Scheme. The scheme allowed beneficiaries to not only make use of their new skills, but also work towards claiming a piece of their own work to take home for their own use. This is really important to volunteers who are financially very stretched.

If your organisation is a member of RankNet and would like to apply, log onto RankNet and complete the application form under ‘Opportunities’. You can also read more about criteria and expectations on Kai Wooder (Director of Enterprise) Blog on RankNet.

If you have any technical issues or have any queries about RankNet signup, please email

Recent News

DundeeHullPlace Based NewsPlymouth

Why place?

Read More
LeadershipNewsPlace Based News

Launch of Social Leaders North East  

Read More
Rank Ripples spring 2024

Rank Ripples – spring 2024 edition

Read More