Inclusion and Diversity

Just Enterprise – Just Dive In CIC

We chatted with Laura Hamilton from Just Dive In CIC about the experience of working with Just Enterprise to get her social enterprise started.

What does your social enterprise focus on?

Just Dive In CIC is dedicated to levelling out the aquatic playing field. We use diving to improve the lives of people living with certain health conditions including disabled and neurodivergent people, and others with poor mental or physical health.

We focus on accessibility, ensuring that no matter what your aquatic dreams or goals are, we can support your skills, ability, and dedication to help you achieve them. We provide scuba diving, sensory and mermaid experiences, courses and qualifications, all recognised by the Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI).

I am a type one diabetic, and our board is made up of a team of four, including members with fibromyalgia, mental health diagnoses and neurodivergence, specifically autism diagnosed in adult life. We are exceptionally well versed on the restrictions placed on those with similar conditions and are driven to change this.

Why did you choose to become a social enterprise?

Just Dive In CIC wants to make the world a more accessible place, supporting people to gain access and benefit from diving and other aquatic activities. Although we are small, by offering our activities to those who wouldn’t normally be able to access them, we hope to have a big impact. Becoming a social enterprise has been a way for us to achieve this impact.

When did you access business support from us and what questions did you have for your business advisor? 

I began receiving support from Firstport in 2021 and continue to access this help. Brian has been our business advisor and he has been amazing. We have found all Firstport staff to be so helpful and professional. Firstport have been believed in us and our vision, allowing us to help others through our work.

I had so many questions for Brian, including:

  • How do we register as a social enterprise?
  • What paperwork did we need to complete to become a CIC?
  • What is social impact?

How did start-up support help you in your journey to becoming a social enterprise?

Simple – it enabled us to properly start! Receiving the business support gave us the confidence to apply for funding through Firstport and we have been successful in applying for both Start It and Build It. This funding has enabled us to afford the kit we needed to run our organisation. It might seem an exaggeration to say this, but Firstport is the reason Just Dive In CIC exists!

Do you have any advice for someone who is considering reaching out for start-up support through Just Enterprise?

Yes, sign up and ask them anything you think you need to, there are no silly questions and there are no mistakes in asking! From my experience, the start-up support through Just Enterprise is compassionate, understanding and supportive.

What is next on the horizon for Just Dive In CIC?

Swimming lessons are also being added to our repertoire, and we are opening our centre, which we are so excited for. We have some work to do to get it to where it needs to be, but we are looking forward to what the future holds for Just Dive In CIC.

Find out more about Just Dive In CIC on their website and by following them on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.