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Weaving Artisans and Markets Together, with Alicia Wallace, All Across Africa

All Across Africa creates sustainable jobs to alleviate poverty in Africa. Travel is a key component of Alicia Wallace’s journey. When she was 14 years old, she visited slums in Mexico. At the time, she thought “this isn’t right.” She wondered if there was a model that creates homes, jobs, and dignity for people, without depending on charity. She knew she wanted to commit her talents and energy to serve others. While attending university in Seattle, Alicia found a job at a law firm. Within two years, she was managing the firm. “I thought that was going to be my career path,” Alicia explains, “to climb a corporate ladder and…

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149, Sara Leedom, African Entrepreneur Collective | The Real Job Creators: African Entrepreneurs

African Entrepreneur Collective builds the capacity of African entrepreneurs to create jobs. Sara Leedom has a history of working in the social justice space in the US and in India. She worked on affordable housing for people with HIV. She worked on teen pregnancy prevention. She worked on education equity. In 2012, Sara and a friend, Julienne Oyler were traveling through Mali. As they got to know their tour guide, he revealed that he wanted to launch a company. At the time, Mali was experiencing political turmoil. The country was under trade sanctions from France. To make matters worse, the country was experiencing a severe drought. The entrepreneur acknowledged the…

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146, Gayathri Vasudevan, LabourNet | Sustainable Livelihoods through Education, Employment and Entrepreneurship

LabourNet is a social enterprise that enables sustainable livelihoods by bridging the gap between education, employment and entrepreneurship. Gayathri Vasudevan worked in crisis situations. She provided humanitarian aid during a riot. She provided aid in the aftermath of an earthquake. But she found the work depressing. “I wanted to do more solutioning,” she told me. After completing her PhD, she worked for the United Nations, International Labor Organization for eight years. There, she saw a disconnect between the policies she was helping to draft and the results on the ground. She remarked, “In India, we’re very good at white papers. We can write very well. We define everything well. But…

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145, Ted Barber, Prosperity Candle | Opportunities for Women to End Poverty

Prosperity Candle is creating opportunities for women to end poverty. Can a meeting over coffee and cannoli change the world? For two years Ted Barber and Amber Chand met once every few weeks in a café in Northampton, Massachusetts, trying to come up with a way to end poverty. Both were busy working around the world, so they knew something about the conditions on the ground. Over these two years, they began to narrow in on their criteria for success. They wanted to work in post-conflict zones. They wanted to work with women, because, as Ted told me, “Dollar-for-dollar, investments in women result in greater change over time, than [investments]…

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071, Founding and Funding, Part 2 | Jesse Finfrock, Morrison & Foerster

Founding and funding a social enterprise requires several practical steps. In today’s episode of Social Entrepreneur, Jesse Finfrock of Morrison & Forester walks us through these steps. With their headquarters in San Francisco, they see a lot of startups take off and other blow up. What makes the difference? Keep in mind that Morrison & Forester is a global firm, working across a global network of 17 offices located in key technology and financial centers in the United States, Asia, and Europe. Their clients include some of the largest financial institutions, Fortune 100 companies, and leading technology and life sciences companies. Jesse works with Morrison & Forester in their impact…

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071, Founding and Funding, Part 2 | Jesse Finfrock, Morrison & Foerster