What is so­cial en­trepreneur­ship?

CityPress - - Tenders -

So­cial en­trepreneurs are in­di­vid­u­als with in­no­va­tive so­lu­tions to so­ci­ety’s most press­ing so­cial prob­lems. They are am­bi­tious and per­sis­tent, and tackle ma­jor so­cial is­sues and of­fer new ideas for large-scale change.

Rather than leav­ing so­ci­etal needs to the govern­ment or busi­ness sec­tors, so­cial en­trepreneurs find what is not work­ing and solve the prob­lem by chang­ing the sys­tem, spread­ing the so­lu­tion and per­suad­ing en­tire so­ci­eties to take new leaps.

So­cial en­trepreneurs of­ten seem to be pos­sessed by their ideas, com­mit­ting their lives to chang­ing the di­rec­tion of their field.

Just as en­trepreneurs change the face of busi­ness, so­cial en­trepreneurs act as the change agents for so­ci­ety by seiz­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties oth­ers miss and im­prov­ing sys­tems, in­vent­ing new ap­proaches and cre­at­ing so­lu­tions.

Here are five of Africa’s top so­cial en­trepreneurs:

Zackie Ach­mat (SA):

As the founder of the Treat­ment Ac­tion Cam­paign, he is spear­head­ing a grass roots so­cial ini­tia­tive to pro­vide af­ford­able, life-sav­ing medicine to peo­ple with HIV/Aids in South Africa in a way that not only staunches the epi­demic’s growth, but also trans­forms the pub­lic health sys­tem and en­ables com­mu­ni­ties to counter the host of other so­cial chal­lenges they are fac­ing.

As the founder of Mhani Gingi So­cial En­tre­pre­neur­ial Net­works, Lil­lian in­cor­po­rates in­come gen­er­a­tion and en­ter­prise de­vel­op­ment into stokvels, cap­i­tal­is­ing on their inherent pop­u­lar­ity among dis­ad­van­taged women and youth.

Lil­lian Masebenza (SA):

Betty Makoni (Zim­babwe):

As the founder of Girl Child Net­work, Betty is build­ing a new gen­er­a­tion of strong, ac­tive fe­male cit­i­zens. In Zim­bab­wean so­ci­ety, girls are dis­crim­i­nated against, of­ten abused, and given lim­ited op­por­tu­ni­ties for ex­pres­sion and de­vel­op­ment. Betty creates safe spa­ces for girls to grow and con­nect with each other.

As the founder of Com­mu­nity Mar­kets for Con­ser­va­tion, he in­tro­duced mar­ket-based con­ser­va­tion that recog­nises the in­ter­con­nect­ed­ness be­tween a broad range of wildlife species and liveli­hoods, with hu­mans play­ing a cen­tral role as pro­tec­tors of the eco­log­i­cal sys­tem. As a re­sult, poach­ing around Zam­bia’s Luangwa Val­ley has fallen by about 50%.

As the founder of Young Africa, Dorien de­vel­oped an af­ford­able method of vo­ca­tional train­ing, li­cens­ing the dif­fer­ent de­part­ments to lo­cal en­trepreneurs. The core of this model is cap­i­tal in­vest­ment rented out to a lo­cal en­tre­pre­neur, who con­se­quently trains and em­ploys youth while pro­duc­ing goods and ser­vices for lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties.

Dale Lewis (Zam­bia):

Dorien Beurskens (Mozam­bique):

South­ern Africa

– Ashoka

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