Social Enterprise

BABIES CIC is a regulated, not for profit community interest company. This means that we are legally committed to using profits made from sales of antenatal classes to put on free antenatal classes in deprived communities. A Community Interest Company means that all of the company, including its assets, courses, customers and profits belong to the community.  A CIC is a type of social enterprise.

What is a social enterprise? A social enterprise:

  • Makes its money from trading – that is, selling goods and services.
  • Reinvests its profits back into the business or social mission.
  • Has a social mission at its heart –what difference it is trying to make, who it is aiming to help and how it is going about doing this.
  • Pays fair salaries to staff rather than rely on volunteers (though like any organisation it may need voluntary help to get started).

A social enterprise does not:

  • Exist to make profit for shareholders.
  • Exist to make its owners wealthy.
  • Rely on volunteering or grants to stay afloat – (though again, it may need support in the early days).

What is a CIC?

A CIC is a new type of company introduced by the United Kingdom government in 2005 under the Companies (Audit, Investigations and Community Enterprise) Act 2004, designed for social enterprises that want to use their profits and assets for the public good.  CICs are designed with primarily social objectives whose surpluses are principally reinvested for that purpose in the community, rather than being driven by the need to maximise profit for shareholders and owners. CICs tackle a wide range of social and environmental issues and operate in all parts of the economy. By using business solutions to achieve public good, it is believed that social enterprises have a distinct and valuable role to play in helping create a strong, sustainable and socially inclusive economy.

Public Services Act (2012)

Under the Public Services (Social Value) Act, all public bodies in England and Wales are required to consider how the services they commission and procure might improve the economic, social and environmental well-being of the area. BABIES is planning on using our results from free antenatal courses to get commissioned in local and national NHS contracts in the future.

What is our plan?

Our plan is simple. We sell antenatal classes to those who can afford to pay – but we keep the prices as low as we can – and we use the profit we make to offer free classes in deprived areas. This is how it should be: everyone gets the same standard of education, not just those who can pay.


Social enterprise goals

BABIES has 8 specific social goals which we aim to meet.

  • To inform, prepare and give parents confidence in their ability to care for their child.
  • To increase the number of parents following the Lullaby Trust¹/Department of Health safe sleeping advice.
  • To increase numbers of mothers following UK health departments’ recommendation that babies should be exclusively breastfed until six months.
  • To assist mums who want to breastfeed to breastfeed for longer by enabling them to identify problems and getting help early on.
  • To decrease babies getting ill from infant formula being made up or stored incorrectly.
  • To reduce the severity/onset of post-natal depression by educating parents about the symptoms and encouraging those with PND to seek professional help.
  • To raise parents awareness of the impacts of long term dummy use.
  • To increase parental understanding of their role in their baby’s development.

We also have the following goals:

  • Commitment to continuous improvement through ongoing parental feedback which feeds directly into our course development process.
  • Ensuring our brand values are upheld throughout all our communications, courses and staff.
  • Ensuring consistently good teaching quality.
  • Building communities wherever we are.


¹Formerly FSID Foundation for the Study of Infant Death