Social Enterprises 2017-12-15T07:17:36+00:00

Social Enterprises

Social enterprises are organizations that can help the community, employ the hard to serve, and carry through an equitable triple bottom line mission while still generating income. Types of Social Enterprises include:

 1. Social purpose businesses — nonprofit, for-profit, a public/private or some combination of the three. These businesses can be new or derived from an existing program:

– “Affirmative” businesses designed specifically to provide permanent jobs for people who are disadvantaged,

– Mission-driven product or service businesses delivering services directly to their users, for example, housing and food services for program clients.

2. Earned income businesses that have an indirect impact on a social need:

– Revenue-generating activities started by nonprofits unrelated to their mission typically created from the organization’s under-utilized assets (such as facility downtime, accounting expertise and copyrights) or as conveniences for its clients or patrons (gift shops, parking lots, cafeterias and so on).

– “For-benefit” companies not directly associated with a nonprofit, but created expressly to generate profits that will then be distributed to one or more nonprofit entities (for example, Newman’s Own).

3. Business partnerships between nonprofits and for-profits:

– Cause-related marketing, –“Taste of the Nation” (American Express and Share Our Strength)

– Cause-related purchasing,–Boeing’s “Philanthropic Work Program” out-sourcing fabrication work to nonprofit employers of the disabled.

4. Other earned income strategies, business ventures and partnerships— Public-private partnerships for community development (CDC’s, CDFI’s), entrepreneurial efforts by government agencies (Seattle’s Housing Levy that leverages city funds for low and moderate income housing with private and foundation funds), joint ventures between forprofits and nonprofits

(Thanks to Jerr Boschee and the Institute for Social Entrepreneurs )
Links to some social enterprises and support organizations:
Social Enterprise Magazine-Online
Pioneer Human Services, Seattle,WA
New Community Corporation, Newark, NJ
Social Enterprise Alliance
Fifth Avenue Committee, Brooklyn, NY
FareStart, Seattle, WA
REDF, San Francisco, CA
Community Wealth Ventures, Washington, DC
Skookum Programs and Jump Rope Co., Port Townsend, WA
See Presentation on Social Entrepreneurs (below)
The World is Changing and Needs Social Entrepreneurs to “Bring it into Balance”
Ashoka envisions a world where Everyone is a Changemaker: a world that responds quickly and effectively to social challenges, and where each individual has the freedom, confidence and societal support to address any social problem and drive change.

Ashoka is the global association of the world’s leading social entrepreneursmen and women with system changing solutions for the world’s most urgent social problems. Since 1981, we have elected over 2,700 leading social entrepreneurs as Ashoka Fellows, providing them with living stipends, professional support, and access to a global network of peers in more than 70 countries.

With our global community, we develop models for collaboration and design infrastructure needed to advance the field of social entrepreneurship and the citizen sector.

Our Fellows inspire others to adopt and spread their innovations – demonstrating to all citizens that they too have the potential to be powerful changemakers.

For information about Ashoka contact: or call (703) 527-8300

Mark Pomerantz
2101 S. Ocean Dr.
Hollywood, FL 33019

(Muhhamed Yunus, Founder Grameen Bank, Nobel Peace Prize Winner)

Grameen Foundation’s mission is to empower the world’s poorest people to lift themselves out of poverty with dignity through access to financial services and to information. With tiny loans, financial services and technology, we help the poor, mostly women, start self-sustaining businesses to escape poverty. Founded in 1997 by a group of friends who were inspired by the work of Grameen Bank in Bangladesh, our global network of microfinance partners reaches over 3 million families in 22 countries

Locally in Seattle, Washington CASH provides a business training course, microcredit lending services from $500-$5,000, technical business assistance and peer support to enable low-income women (especially women currently dependent on public assistance), people with disabilities and new immigrants/refugees to start or expand self-employment ventures. For information about Washington CASH contact or call (206) 352-1945