What is Social Business?According to the Grameen Creative Lab, social business “operates for the benefit of addressing social needs that enable societies to function more efficiently.” In essence, social business – or social enterprise as it is sometimes called – is about using business to change our world for the better. It's also key to remember that a social business is one that does not pay dividends – instead all profits earned are reinvested in the social business, which enables it to continue operating in and supporting local communities.
Professor Muhammad Yunus, founder of the Grameen Bank and winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, sketched out Seven Principles for social business, which we will use as a foundation for this challenge. You can also watch Professor Yunus discuss Grameen Danone Foods, a social business addressing the nutrition needs of low-income communities in India.
The Scale of the Problem: Health in Caldas
- Infant health and mortality: 8.3% of newborns are born underweight and Caldas has a 12.5% infant mortality rate
- Malnutrition: 27.1% of female-led households suffer from severe food insecurity. And for those who do have access to food, unhealthy or poor nutrition often leads to high cholesterol and heart disease.
- Reproductive and sexual health: Caldas experiences high rates of teenage pregnancies, HIV/AIDS, and uterine cancer
- Unhealthy living conditions: residents in Caldas often use asbestos to build their roofs, which causes high rates of respiratory diseases. Residents also face overcrowding, which can lead to serious health consequences, especially during mudslides and other periods of intense weather.
Background on Grameen Creative Lab & HSBM of CaldasGrameen Creative Lab
The Grameen Creative Lab's vision is to serve society’s most pressing needs through social business. We have set ambitious goals for ourselves to reach by 2015:
- Create broad awareness for social business
- Establish Grameen as a worldwide brand
- Create movement for social business worldwide
- Establish social business as mainstream university case
- Enable access to corporate knowledge
- Enable access to funding for social business
- Ensure quality control for social business
Click here to learn more.
Holistic Social Business Movement of Caldas
The Holistic Social Business Movement of Caldas (HSBM) aims at eradicating poverty and rebuilding the region’s economy while addressing the main social needs of Caldas: education nutrition, healthcare and housing. The HSBM of Caldas was launched in 2009 by Prof. Muhammad Yunus and Caldas’ Governor Aristizabal and focuses on three main areas: microfinance services to alleviate poverty, social business funding, and social business joint ventures. The HSBM of Caldas has started as a pilot in Colombia but longer term will develop into a replicable model of poverty reduction applicable worldwide. Click here to learn more.
As usual – we'll start with the Inspiration phase where we gather existing insights surrounding the challenge. Next we roll over to the Concepting phase where you can add your bright ideas, informed by all that inspirational goodness. Then we get the chance to collectively assess concepts in the Evaluation Phase to help decide on the most relevant solutions.
Sources for the Brief:
- Linea Base Objetivos de Desarrollo del Milenio en Caldas 2007, Hernando Márquez Palacio, Grupo Proyectos Estratégicos, Despacho del Gobernador
- Caldas, tierra de contrastes, Gobernador Mario Aristizábal Muñoz, Grupo para la Reducción de la Pobreza
- Plan de Desarrollo 2008-2011, Secretaria de Planeación Departamental, Grupo Proyectos Estratégicos, Despacho del Gobernador
All images courtesy of Grameen Creative Lab
Video courtesy of Gayle Ferraro, Aerial Productions
Community & Social Media Manager:Meena Kadri