January issue

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Show of solidarity

Challenge the negatives, feed off the positives

We love featuring stories of achievement, but some really make us sit up and take notice. Our cover story (page 8) gives the floor to four new entrepreneurs who competed to win an award for their fledgling businesses. There could only be one official winner, but that really wasn’t the point. Each of them had faced their demons to overcome addiction that could have crippled their ambitions and chances of learning the skills to thrive in business. With the right support, they are taking off in their careers and taking on the world. We have asked Amar Lodhia, who leads the enterprise scheme that supported them, to be part of our national service user involvement conference this year. Amar is among an inspiring set of speakers who represent the whole spirit of this year’s event, which we have called Be the Change (page 22); he has learned from his own past to grab every opportunity in front of him and live life to the full. Money is tight and times are fraught, but we hope you’ll join us on 14 February for an inspiring event. Feedback every year shows the enormous benefits of learning from colleagues from all over the country, including setting up new service user groups and finding constructive ways to work better with services. More details are on our website and if you need help or suggestions on getting there, please get in touch. See you in Birmingham!

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