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Michaela Sarah P.

Dee March 2, 2016


LS 127 Paper # 3
Social Entrepreneurship Mr. Sabug

The talk begins with a question posed by Sir Dani Ocampo. He asked use whether
we remember the ASEAN conference wherein an event was conducted where Obama
had a television appearance along with an entrepreneur and a Filipina, named Karen
Jimeno. Luckily, one student remembered. However this thought, although used as a
catapult to get the interest of the students, was not fully explained as to how it relates to
social entrepreneurship. Therefore, I took the chance to look for articles that may point
me to the idea of how it connected to social entrepreneurship. I was surprised as I
stumbled upon the article where it stated that media conveyed a message of supporting
Wheatberry Bake Shop and Coffee, which is a social enterprise that was promoted by
Obama.
Ateneo de Manila University, especially because it offers a holistic formation for
all has programs that cater to social enterprise, such as ACSENT. It is an incubator for
business, just like SOMBA, however what sets it apart is that it is a hub for social
entrepreneurs. It aims to foster a social transformation which contributes to that of
nation-building by helping cultivate a vibrant social entrepreneurship sector in the
Philippines. This is greatly in-line with the Sanggunians aim for all student
organizations in the Ateneo, the theme of nation-building. Aside from ACSENT as just a
mere social entrepreneurship hub, it serves the employees of the Ateneo through
conducting classes to them. More than this, ACSENT shares its knowledge to those who
belong to rural areas as they promote an inclusive growth and an alleviation of poverty.
I can relate well with their advocacy because last year, I was under the
community development department of our organization. What we aim for is to teach
families the value of financial literacy. It is through this that I have become highly
inclined to social responsibility because I want a more equitable distribution of
opportunities. I find it extremely unfair if people have this thirst for power while there
are those who really have none. Our efforts, although it may seem like it is little, may
possibly go a long way.
The crowd was then asked, what makes a social enterprise, a social enterprise?
Silence filled the room, and Sir Dani began explaining it through a concrete company
example. He asked if we have all tasted the famous jams from Baguio, and then further
discussed that these jams were produced by the Good Shepherd wherein the sole
purpose of selling these jams was to educate young girls in the Cordillera highlands.
More than this, what keeps them going is that they want to feed these children in order
for them to be educated properly. These jams, although seen only as a delicacy, are
actually something that has a bigger purpose that people have forgotten to see. It was
business with a mission and its mission was to turn the children from the Cordilleras to
good adults, it was a social mission.
Relating this to my personal life, I have always supported social enterprises,
especially that of the GK Enchanted Farms. A few months back, they became our partner
for a certain task given to us by JGSOM for the SOM week. To find out that they cook
baked goods, I already had an inclination to their activities given that I have a
background in cooking. What my friends and I did was to create a new recipe of baked
brownies and cookies for them. More so, helped them create a packaging that was more
appealing to the public and was in line with the theme of Gawad Kalinga. It was more
than fulfilling because all the proceeds that our efforts, actually went to Gawad Kalinga
in order for them to sustain and keep the business that we taught them.
One of the key features that define a social enterprise is that it has to be driven
by a social mission or purpose. Similar to the Good Shepherd, I have friends that are
making mushroom chicharon for the Lupao, Pampanga farmers. From what I
understood, since it is a social enterprise, they give 33% of the revenue to the farmers,
other than this, the remaining amount is used to be reinvested in the company for it to
grow and remain sustainable. Often, people think that all business profits go inside the
pockets of its owners, however this should not be the case for social enterprises. A big
percentage of the profit earned is used to give to the companys mission and
responsibility.
An interesting thought brought up in the talk was that a social entrepreneur is a
cross between mother Theresa and Donald Trump where one must have a heart of the
former because of her passion for the poor an the business acumen of the latter. I agree
with this, because if there is no balance between the two, it will be hard for a company
to thrive in a social entrepreneurship and may possibly even result to the idea that it is
not staying true to what it stands for.
I have always wanted to become a social entrepreneur. But, this is a long-term
goal that I have for myself. I believe that in order for me to become one, I must first be
an entrepreneur. Through this, I will already have an experience first of how a business
must go and in that way, I will not create drastic mistakes in the business, which may
affect the community. This is one of the reasons why I did not take the social
entrepreneurship track for our capstone course.
Just to give a clear picture, I envision my social enterprise as something that is
connected to travel. I want to create a company that will promote the eco-tourism of
any Philippine island. A good example of this would be the island of Batanes. Often
known as an island that always experiences storms, I aim to take this notion away by
helping out their indigenous people. We will create a sustainable business enterprise
that has social impact. I remember going there and they had poor housing facilities and
this may be my mission- to provide them with a good home. Therefore, most of the
proceeds of our eco-tourism venture will be for that sole purpose. Not only will it gain
the island of Batanes possible popularity, the social enterprise will also be able to give
back to those that really ensured that Batanes would remain a wonder.