How Do You Solve A Problem Like..?

A podcast for anyone concerned with the big problems facing society, we’re telling the stories of the brilliant entrepreneurs using social purpose business to create solutions.

Are we facing a loneliness epidemic? How can the UK be struggling with both childhood obesity and hunger in our schools? What needs to change to stop knife crime?

We hear from those working on the front line of these issues in How Do You Solve A Problem Like..?, a new fortnightly documentary podcast from UnLtd.

British society is divided, with too many people being left behind and unable to access the services, jobs or opportunities they need. In each episode we feature dedicated and enterprising people who are determined to use their big ideas to meet these challenges in innovative and unusual ways.

Social Entrepreneur in Residence, Milly Chowles travels across the UK, meeting with these leaders of social change who have created ‘business for good’ ventures, working on a local or national scale. Our pod is a dose of optimism for people who believe the answers are out there.

Season 1 tackles five big issues: Loneliness, Youth Violence, Hygiene Poverty, Homelessness and Childhood Health.


Episode 1, Loneliness

How do you talk about tackling loneliness, when the word itself is taboo? Meet two entrepreneurs responding to this issue. Alex Smith, who won the Obama Fellowship Award for civic innovators in 2018 talks about his fight against loneliness and polarisation in the UK. Alex Hoskyn is the creator of Chatty Café, a brand new scheme that has already spread as far as Australia and Gibraltar and has the backing of mega high street chain Costa coffee.

Alex Smith - Cares Family

Alex Smith launched the Cares Family business in 2012 to fight against loneliness and polarisation in the UK, by connecting seniors and young professionals to build new and lasting relationships. In 2018 he won the Obama Fellowship Award for civic innovators, recognising him for working with communities to create transformational change. He is one of only 20 people selected from across the globe to be part of a two-year programme, designed to amplify the impact of their work and inspire a wave of civic innovation.

How You Can Help

  • Donate to The Cares Family – in north London, south London, Manchester or Liverpool
  • Join The Cares Family's gala
  • Complete a challenge for The Cares Family – in north London, south London, Manchester or Liverpool
  • Connect The Cares Family to your employer – in north London, south London, Manchester or Liverpool

Alex Hoskyn - Chatty Cafe

Alex Hoskyn is a part time Social Worker from Oldham. In 2017 she set up The Chatty Café Scheme which encourages cafes and other social settings to designate a Chatter & Natter table. This is where customers can sit if they are happy to talk to other customers. The aims of the scheme are to reduce loneliness and get people chatting.

Listen on

Milly Chowles podcast host

Milly Chowles

Milly has eight years of professional experience as a radio and podcast producer. She is helping charities communicate more effectively with their supporters, and reach new ones, through bespoke high-quality podcasts. She uses the power of stories and the medium of audio as particularly impactful way to amplify the voices of marginalised people and to challenge stigma – and has started work on an UnLtd podcast.

Anna Markland Podcast co-host

Anna Markland

Anna is a Venture Manager at UnLtd, leading on the Pioneers Initiative, which explores how social entrepreneurs can go mainstream and make change at a system level. She supports profit-for-purpose businesses to scale their revenue and impact as part of Thrive, our accelerator for those who want to break down barriers to employment or improve wellbeing for people in later life.

Anna’s background is in healthcare consulting at EY, managing innovation funding at the Health Foundation and working directly in social enterprises like the Bromley by Bow Centre.

online community


We host a series of events throughout the UK each year. From classes and conferences, seminars and workshops to networking events and training sessions.

Upcoming events

learning area

Learning area

Looking for financial guidance? Want to sharpen your marketing skills? Access our range of guides in the learning area..

Visit our learning area

Hide this Message

To provide you with the best browsing experience, this site uses cookies. By continuing to use the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.