New social entrepreneurs will find a wealth of social entrepreneurship examples from which they can draw inspiration and ideas.
Dr. V and David Green are two famous social entrepreneurs who set up a trust in Madurai, India with the goal of providing accessible health care technology and services to the local community. They founded this organization back in 1976, and today it has grown to be one of the largest facilities for eye care in the world. They have expanded to 4 other cities in India to offer services to more people, and today attract patients from all over the world. Another inspiring example of social entrepreneurship from India was founded by social entrepreneur Vikram Akula. His for profit company empowers the poor through micro finance. Over the years, they have increased economic opportunity for the disenfranchised in India by giving them access to financial services, and helped many poor families turn their lives around by starting small businesses.
Another great example of social entrepreneurship can be found in the social media space. The new fashion company was started by two young Southern California social entrepreneurs who applied their social media skills to raise huge awareness for their idea, and to successfully raise capital for their start up as well. The 19 and 26 year old founders were already successful entrepreneurs who decided that running a strictly for profit business was not satisfying enough. They also recognized that starting a traditional charity was not the answer, since they saw how many of these were going out of business due to lack of funding and awareness.
The UK has been a great source of social entrepreneurship examples and inspiration, with British social entrepreneurs coming up with a variety of exciting ideas that have become famous around the world. The Big Issue, the Eden Project and Jamie Oliver’s successful city restaurant are just a few of the well known social enterprises to come out of the UK over the years. Another award winning example is a fair trade chocolate company that set the standard for ethical food businesses. It is based on the co-op model, meaning it is co-owned by a cocoa farmers cooperative called Kuapa Kokoo in Ghana. Another award winning social entrepreneurship example from the UK is a company that helps women find flexible employment.
The Social Enterprise Alliance has compiled some great social entrepreneurship case studies from around the world. One recent example is the story of a a social enterprise dedicated to the prevention and reduction of crime. They develop and implement innovative transitional services that help their clients to transform their lives following and successfully re-enter their communities. The company uses methods which have been proven most effective in allowing clients to successfully transition to productive roles in society. They employ highly qualified staff and implement the latest breakthroughs in the field to design their curricula. They also develop and maintain collaborative relationships with community partners to provide clients with networks of support. This helps to boost the community stake in each client’s successful transition back into society. The ultimate goal of the company is to help clients maintain a productive and law abiding lifestyle.
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