During my time at Campbell University, I have been involved in the Algernon Sydney Sullivan Foundation, which focuses on encouraging college students across the American southeast to pursue social entrepreneurship. Whenever I talk about this, everyone always asks me what social entrepreneurship is.
Social Entrepreneurship: The use of start-up companies and other entrepreneurs to develop, fund, and implement solutions to social, cultural, or environmental issues. ¹
Basically, using a traditional business model to enact change in society. It can look several different ways. For example:
- Shea Moisture (one of the brands I use to tame my curly hair) is committed to producing natural hair care products, using sustainably and ethically sourced materials. These are purchased through fair trade, providing safe jobs for people across the globe.
- Eleos Coffee uses their coffee shops to engage communities and share the gospel in impoverished areas of Kansas City and Detroit.
- Kiva works to crowdfund micro-loans to enable people to start businesses across the globe, especially those facing circumstances that would render them unable to start a business otherwise.
This idea of social entrepreneurship is rising. Forbes even says that it is the new business model, especially as 94% of millennials want to use their skills for a cause rather than simply earning a paycheck. So it is this concept that I am going to explore. Stay tuned to learn more about the impact that can be made with something as small as a cup of coffee or as large as starting an investment company.