On the first week of our online Social Entrepreneurship course, we were asked to visit https://www.choosesocial.ph and choose three social enterprises featured. Our task is to describe/study/draw insights on how these organizations/companies “do business” and compare them with the usual commercial enterprise.
Let me share with you what I’ve learned on what are social enterprises.
While commercial enterprises aim to produce profit and sell products, social enterprises are businesses with social cause. They aim to provide solutions to social problems such as poverty, environmental protection, health care, education, etc. It aims to create sustainable profit which will benefit its beneficiaries which are mostly the poor or communities. Profits are reinvested in the business to be able to expand and extend the benefits to other communities.
Here are some of the social enterprises in the Philippines which support communities:
Enchanted Farm Café – The café serves delectable products from The Enchanted Farm in Angat Bulacan. The café staff come from the residents of the nearby Gawad Kalinga Villages thereby creating employment for the local community. Products sold at the café also came from social enterprises engaged with the Enchanted Farm. It aims to raise social awareness by promoting these local products while uplifting the lives of the poor.
ECHOstore – Promotes sustainable lifestyle while supporting local communities. They sell natural and community-made fair trade products. They also operate a coffee shop (ECHOCafe), a food market for fresh and organic products (ECHOMarket) and ECHOsi which is a foundation teaching livelihood sustainability to marginalized groups, women’s groups and cultural communities.
AKABA – offers bags made by weaving cooperatives and artisans from impoverished communities. Proceeds from AKABA bags provide steady income to the artisans and supports livelihood projects in said communities.