Most entrepreneurs rather focus in the private sector to gain wealth, but there’s a new generation of entrepreneurs that have chosen through their business, to improve social issues. These types of entrepreneurs are willing to take risk and effort to solve community-based problems through their initiatives. These types of business create economic and social value, act as catalysts for social change, can influence government policy, and reshape corporate social responsibility. Below are four individuals around the world who currently making an impact in community development.
Dr. Elizabeth Rule
Dr. Rule is an assistant professor of Critical Race, Gender, and Culture Studies at American University, who developed an app – Guide to Indigenous DC. The app is configured with a mapping technology that highlights important sites to Native Americans to confront the national myth of invisibility. This is due to a report in 2018 by the First Nations Development Institute indicating that invisibility is the biggest barrier to racial and social equality, and most non-Native Americans report to not know a single Indigenous person. The Guide to Indigenous DC app also displays empowering stories of these sites, advocating its rich history.
Kola is an entrepreneur who founded Babban Gona with the goal to support small Nigerians Farmers in the hope that can eventually provide for themselves and their communities. Currently, Babban Gona has increased the yield of the national averages by 2.3 times. As well, it has a focus on giving agricultural training to help new farmers to start making profits.
Founded TOMS Shoes, after being inspired in a trip to Argentina, where he invested $300,000 of his own money. His pledge is that of every pair of shoes sold, a pair would be donated. He eventually expanded it to “On-For-One” campaign, where it also supports water, sight, birth, and anti-bullying initiatives. Blake has helped create awareness of global poverty and health and as of 2019, TOMS provided people with 95 million pairs of shoes, 72,000 weeks of safe water, and restored sight in more than 780,000 people in developing countries.
Abdelrazek Aly and Ramy Soliman
Abdelrazek and Ramy are founders of Bonocle Inc., the first braille entertainment platform/device to integrate blind people in the workplace and classrooms and bring equality. This device increases productivity by giving instant access to braille and it cuts down costs on printing. It also makes education easier by being fully customizable and it lets individuals immerse themselves in Bonacle’s arcade games that combines braille with motion sensors and onboard controls. Bonocle goal is to improve the lives of the blind community through their technology.
These individuals showed the world, among many more, that social entrepreneurship can both generate profit and solve community-based problems. And hopefully they inspire more individuals to take this entrepreneurial path, whether they help 10 people or 10 million. It only takes some insightful ideas to make an impact, it doesn’t have to be crazy.