Beyond CSR, a social enterprise is upheld by the same values and purposes as a non-governmental organization. They address local and global issues in their day-to-day business, from their advertising to their manufacturing or employment. Rather than being funded solely by private or corporate donors, a social enterprise is a business that provides goods and services for the community, which uses its profits to further its mission towards social justice and environmental sustainability.
Unlike the conventional business structure, a social enterprise exists for the welfare of all stakeholders involved in the production of a good or a service. A social enterprise understands, it is for the sake of their sustainability that both consumers as well as producers are taken care of and given equal opportunity to thrive.
They do this by providing services that focus on the continual growth and personal development of the employer. Social enterprises may contribute to supporting individuals by providing opportunities to individuals who otherwise would not have access to basic necessities such as food and shelter, or education and technology. In most cases, training and creativity effectively allows the supported target-groups to develop skills valuable to life and the workplace, in turn creating priceless social wealth for the future of the community.
Locally, there has been many social enterprises facilitating the growth of its people, particularly marginalized groups all throughout Australia. A quick research will find you women refugees being given the opportunities to develop their arts and crafts skills to sell jewellery and other knick-knacks; homeless people being provided jobs to be creative in their magazine sales strategies; and the former mentally-suffering folk the opportunity for respectable service in hospitality. Equally remarkable, are the social enterprises providing extra income for indigenous communities by the production of alternative and organic medicines, further sustaining local ancient wisdom and culture. Throughout the country, hotels, resorts and tourist attractions are gradually moving from basic CSR to a more socially-conscious model; from sourcing organic and fair-trade goods to implementing more just employment policies. Not forgetting our Australia’s favorite past-time, coffee shops and bars are gradually extending partnerships with local and global developing communities in their sourcing of material and profit-sharing. Within social entrepreneurship lies a deep understanding that our local everyday choices are key towards a global step in social justice and environmental sustainability for all.
South East Asia
Beginning in the Philippines, social entrepreneurship is part of GK’s 2nd phase towards a better world. The GK Enchanted Farm in Angat, Bulacan, is home to social enterprises in various stages. The team welcomes interns from Europe, USA, and other parts of the world to contribute to the developments of new and existing social enterprises, by familiarizing participants with local culture and the living environment.
For more updates, visit: https://www.facebook.com/Gkenchantedfarm
Further facilitating their development is GKonomics, the social enterprise support-group of GK. Weekly meetings allow curious minds to share knowledge regarding social enterprise – a safe place to learn, be creative, ask questions and suggest ideas.
More on GK’s social enterprises: http://www.socialbusinesssummit.net/venue/enchanted-farm-social-businesses.html
Looking for an internship overseas? Want to start your own social enterprise here in Melbourne?
Call 1800-INTERNSHIP tell us how you would like to contribute to the world!
Welcome to the global GK family!