Team SOS is ready to support businesses
WORKING as one team to support businesses and communities in southern Scotland is the top priority of Dumfries and Galloway and Scottish Borders Councils and the new South of Scotland Enterprise (SOSE).
That’s the message from the three organisations which, as Team South of Scotland (Team SOS) will implement actions to support the economy to respond to the impact of COVID-19 in a way which best supports the area’s unique needs.
The Team SOS approach builds on the existing strengths of both councils and the newly-established SOSE.
Officials and members from all three meet regularly to develop a shared understanding and plans which will give support where there are gaps in existing support.
The team has met virtually and shared data and intelligence to better understand the current impacts of the pandemic in various sectors.
This analysis allows potential gaps to be identified to implement some targeted actions to best support businesses and communities.
This will include doing more detailed evaluation of all communities through a place-based approach to give dedicated support to businesses and organisations in each area.
The team is creating a virtual Team SOS by pooling staff to maximise resources and intelligence.
Both councils are processing the business support grants and focusing efforts on making sure organisations find the right support and ensuring feedback is given to the Scottish government, Councillor Rob Davidson, depute leader at Dumfries and Galloway, said: “This is, without doubt, the most effective way of ensuring the right support can be put in place for our businesses and communities.
“Partnership working with other bodies will help develop a robust recovery plan, looking beyond the immediate emergency.”
Councillor Mark Rowley, Scottish Borders Council’s executive member for business and economic development, said: “Given the enormous scale of the challenge, working as one team is the most effective way to help businesses survive, make their way through the challenges, get back on their feet wherever possible and ensure the right support is available.”
Professor Russel Griggs, SOSE chairman, added: “We have been clear from the start that SOSE is committed to supporting both councils.
“We’re having very productive discussions with them to develop plans on where we can potentially add to the support and resources during this difficult time.
“This partnership builds on the work we did over the past two years with the councils and the South of Scotland Economic Partnership (SOSEP) which paved the way for SOSE. This will continue post-crisis.”
Support from Team SOS is at https://supportdg.dumgal.gov.uk or call 01387 260280; www.scotborders.gov.uk/covid19 business or call 01835 825600; ww.southofscotlandenterprise.com or call 0300 304 8888.
Keep up to date with the support at findbusinesssupport.gov.scot