August Social Impact News Roundup: Accelerating Social Entrepreneurship in Emerging Markets

Alexandra Nemeth

Senior Manager, Content Marketing & Storytelling at MovingWorlds

Every month, we share leading social impact insights, trends, job opportunities, and events to help you drive positive change from wherever you are. Here are some highlights from August 2022:

New Avenues to Support Social Entrepreneurship and Job Creation in Emerging Markets 

Serious funding gaps for micro, small, and growing businesses in emerging markets are constraining business growth, job creation, and consequent livelihood improvements. Mercy Corps Ventures recently launched a new pilot program leveraging decentralized finance to power a Buy-Now-Pay-Later product for small enterprises, like food vendors, allowing them to grow their businesses and power the economies of the communities they live in through decent work. (As a concept, decent work has long been tricky to quantify, but a new guide from ANDE provides an overview of how the concept plays out at different levels, along with useful resources and global best practices.) But entrepreneurs piloting innovative business models in nascent markets need more than access to capital to achieve impact at scale. The newly launched MCV Venture Platform provides a suite of services beyond funding to ensure long-term success, including pre- and post- investment support, partnerships, impact measurement & management, and insights sharing. 

Working Towards a Circular Economy for Waste

Inadequate waste management is a major contributor to both plastic pollution and climate change. However, promising circular economy solutions are emerging and there is growing interest in using digital technology to improve their efficiency and effectiveness. Social enterprise Taka Taka Ni Mali, for example, is promoting circularity by driving the creation of green jobs and supporting entrepreneurship in waste management. Similarly, social enterprise ReCircle is working towards circularity by means of organized employment for waste workers within the informal economy (learn more in their impact report here.) A new report from GSMA explores the potential for collaboration between mobile network operators and circular waste management social enterprises like these to improve citizen engagement in recycling and increase transparency in the plastics supply chain.

Imagining a New Paradigm for ESG Investing

Proof of Impact’s Chief Impact Officer, Evan Vahouny, shared in a recent Impact Entrepreneur article why the scope of existing ESG rating approaches is limited, and for investors interested in directing their money towards impactful companies, the methodology is fundamentally flawed. He suggests that investors should demand a new paradigm of benchmarking — one that prioritizes both financial and stakeholder materiality. Learn more in the full article here.

Social Impact Job Opportunities

Upcoming Events & New Programs

  • September 5: Deadline for non-profit organizations working on climate change and education to apply for funding from Personio Foundation
  • September 13-15: Join ANDE for its 2022 Annual Conference, an interactive event featuring workshops, breakouts, and microtalks on solutions to common challenges, as well as networking sessions with leading thinkers in the SGB space. Register here.
  • September 14: Join the TRANSFORM Support Hub for “Developing a Theory of Change To Define and Communicate Your Social Enterprise’s Impact,” a free webinar featuring monitoring, evaluation, and learning expert Deepti Sastry. Learn more and register here.
  • September 28: Join the TRANSFORM Support Hub for the second webinar in our series with Deepti Sastry, “Methods to Gather and Communicate Impact Data for Your Social Enterprise.” Learn more and register here.
  • September 28-29: The world’s largest social enterprise event, Social Enterprise World Forum (SEWF22) is taking place in Brisbane, Australia! Join over 2,000 changemakers online or in-person to access new opportunities, build your network and participate in conversations that will shape the social enterprise movement. Get your ticket here.
  • September 30: Last day to access SEWF Verification FREE of charge! Don’t miss this opportunity to become an SEWF Verified Social Enterprise during the free pilot phase – learn more here.
  • September 30: Deadline to apply to the October cohort of the MovingWorlds Institute Global Fellowship. Learn more and apply here.

Join us in welcoming the newest members of the TRANSFORM Support Hub

  • Global Distributors Collective: A collective of last mile distributors around the world who are dedicated to supporting distributors to help them reach millions of unserved customers with life-changing products, and to developing the last mile distribution sector as a whole.

Congratulations to….

  • Ashaya (a food waste social enterprise founded by former experteer Anish Malpani) on being selected as a winner of Social Alpha’s “Techtonic Innovations in Circular Economy” competition!
  • Arqlite on launching its licensing system to expand its unique mixed plastic recycling technology across the world! Learn more about how this system is building strategic alliances to transform the hard-to-recycle plastics into sustainable products here.
  • Makers Unite on its new corporate partnership with Patagonia! 
  • OneSeventeen Media on its award of a National Science Foundation Phase I grant for its reThinkIt!: Intelligent Mental Health Companion app, and selection as a “Best for The World Company” by B Lab!
  • Proof of Impact on its latest raise of $6M in Pre Series A capital, only 8 months after the Seed round! 
  • Seabin for its feature in RedBull Social Innovation!

A Final Bit of Inspiration

“Human creativity is unlimited. It is the capacity of humans to make things happen which didn’t happen before. Creativity provides the key to solving our social and economic problems.”
Muhammad Yunus, Nobel Peace Prize laureate and pioneer of microcredit and microfinance

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