October 2023 Social Impact News Roundup: Breaking Down Barriers to Access

Alexandra Nemeth

Senior Manager, Content Marketing & Storytelling at MovingWorlds

Enabling Access to Capital for Social Entrepreneurs

In order to raise capital successfully, entrepreneurs need to have clarity around what type of funding they are after, and how to ask for it in a compelling way. To make it easier for entrepreneurs to evaluate which type of funding makes the most sense for their businesses, our friends at Village Capital recently launched the new Capital Explorer tool, bringing reliable information about different options together all in one place. Then, to help entrepreneurs ask for that funding in a way that gets a “yes,” we teamed up with the Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship to deliver a two-part workshop all about “The Art of the Ask.” Find the key takeaways about how to ask investors for money here, including a ‘justifiable ask’ template you can put into practice in your next pitch.

Navigating the Process of Corporate Social Procurement

Of course, raising capital isn’t the only pathway social enterprises can take to grow their revenues and impact. Tying into corporate supply chains is becoming an increasingly popular way for social businesses to grow on earned revenue, while at the same time helping the corporations advance their ESG, CSR, and DEI goals. To better understand the unique opportunities and challenges of corporate social procurement from both sides of the negotiating table, check out this recap in Impact Entrepreneur of Miller Center’s recent “Social Entrepreneurship & Corporate Supply Chain” Panel. Looking for tips to help your social enterprise close more sales with corporate clients? Check out this report from Supply Change, and consider beta testing Koru’s new platform that leverages AI technologies to connect organizations to corporate partners for effective and sustainable global impact!

The Applications (and Limitations) of AI for Good

By experimenting with AI tools in an ethical and human-centered way, social entrepreneurs have an opportunity to expand both their business and their impact — particularly in these four areas. That being said, context matters: in complex, high-stakes situations, AI can actually cause more harm than good. In this article, Thomson Reuters exposes the shortcomings of AI in the asylum process, where the move to AI translation is resulting in significant errors with real consequences for asylum seekers. As one of the experts interviewed shared, “There are cases for it, and those are more and more compelling all the time. But it’s still not ready in most cases to be used with the training wheels off and without a human involved.” The bottom line? Whether AI is used for good or not ultimately depends on the discretion of the humans choosing to apply it. 

Social Impact Job Openings

Upcoming Events & New Programs

  • November 1 & November 30: Join us as we dive into Social Enterprise Fundamentals for Professionals. In this month-long learning journey you will be guided through the social enterprise space to help you identify social enterprises, understand how they differ from traditional businesses, and what is needed to help them grow to increase their impact. Learn more and register here.
  • November 2: Join us for Part II of our “Strategic Scaling” webinar series with Spring Impact! In this session, you’ll learn how to quickly test your scale strategy so that you avoid wasting time and resources. Learn more and register here!
  • November 7: Join Global Distributors Collective for a free webinar, “Innovation Trends in Last Mile Distribution: A Spotlight on e-Mobility.” Register here.
  • November 8: Join Yunus Social Business for a free webinar, “Sector Spotlight: Plastic Waste” to delve into the issue of plastic waste & explore opportunities for partnerships between corporations & social enterprises in the Global South. Learn more and register here.
  • November 8: Join Swiss Capacity Building Facility for a free webinar, “How to effectively financially include and empower low-income populations in Sub-Saharan Africa? A perspective on client-centric approaches applied in West Africa.” Register here.
  • November 9: Join Social Enterprise Alliance for a free workshop, “Philanthropic Impact-First Investing” to discuss the evolution of funding philosophies & approaches with Cindy Willard, Director of Capital Activation at Impact Charitable. Register here.
  • November 12: Deadline for young changemakers addressing biodiversity loss, the climate crisis, and pollution in Europe/MENA to apply to the Changmakers for the Planet Europe and MENA Program 2024.
  • February 15: Deadline to apply for Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship’s globally recognized accelerator program kicking off in June 2024. See if you qualify and apply here.

Congratulations to….

A Final Bit of Inspiration

“Obstacles don’t have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don’t turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it.”

-Michael Jordan