India

The Empowerment Bag: A Bag to End Human Trafficking, with Vaishali Umrikar

The Empowerment Bag is an eco-friendly brand of bags, that employs women at risk of sex trafficking. Vaishali Umrikar is a passionate social entrepreneur who is committed to fighting human trafficking. While she was in high school, she read the book, The Natashas: Inside the New Global Sex Trade by Victor Malarek. This book awakened her to the realities of modern-day human trafficking. She became involved in anti-trafficking advocacy groups throughout high school and college. Since then, Vaishali has worked with the Australian Government Office for Women, Chicago Probation Sex Offender Unit, and Chicago Alliance Against Sexual Exploitation. After graduating from college and beginning her corporate career, Vaishali realized her…

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154, Vijaya Pastala, Under the Mango Tree | A Hybrid Social Enterprise that Creates Livelihood from Bees

Under the Mango Tree increases agricultural yields by teaching rural farmers to keep bees. Vijaya Pastala and Under the Mango Tree are a good illustration of something that I believe which is, miracles find you while you’re in motion. Vijaya started experimenting with her business idea in January 2009. By January, 2010, Vijaya had 8,000 rupees in the bank. That’s less than $120 USD. At the time, the monthly cost of running Under the Mango Tree was around 34,000 rupees. Under the Mango Tree was gaining positive press, but beneath the surface, Vijay’s personal savings, which she was using to fund the company, were running out. During this crisis, Vijaya…

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154, Vijaya Pastala, Under the Mango Tree | A Hybrid Social Enterprise that Creates Livelihood from Bees

127, Clementine Chambon, Amit Saraogi, Oorja | Rural Electrification of India Using Waste

Oorja’s biomass and solar-powered micro-grids provide affordable and reliable electricity to off-grid communities in rural India. In India, 450 million people lack access to reliable energy. This has several repercussions including a lack of economic development, poor health outcomes, gender inequity, poor education and more. Without reliable electricity, villagers rely on fossil-fuels such as kerosene and diesel. They spend up to 20% of household income on these dirty sources of power. At the same time, people in rural India produce 200 million tons of crop waste per year. This waste is usually burned in the field, producing greenhouse gasses. Clementine Chambon and Amit Saraogi met in a Climate-KIC workshop in…

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114, Satyan Mishra, Drishtee | Developing Sustainable Communities

Satyan Mishra of Drishtee is developing sustainable communities in the villages of India. In the late 1990s, while Satyan Mishra was working on a government contract, he had the opportunity to visit many villages across India. In India, more than 775 million people live in small villages. Nearly half of them live on less than one dollar per day. Satyan saw how the presence of a computer in a village could have an impact. His company, Drishtee started setting up kiosks in villages. By 2006 they had set up over 1,000 village kiosks. And yet, as Satyan told me, “I realized that what we had done had not really made any…

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108, Chris Underhill, BasicNeeds | Partnering with people living with mental illness

BasicNeeds works in partnership with people living with mental illness. Picture it. A young Chris Underhill and his wife are making their way out of a large hospital in Malawi where they have just been given wonderful news. They are expecting their first child. The year is 1969. The hallways are crowded as the young couple is compelled forward, carried by their good news. The courtyard is filled with family members of hospital patients. Smoke from cooking fills the air. As they round a corner, they come upon an unexpected scene. They find themselves confronted with a cage containing five men. The cage is surrounded by small children poking the…

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053, Katy Ashe and Edith Elliott, Noora Health | Design Thinking to Improve Health Outcomes

The founders of Noora Health utilized design thinking to iterate their way to dramatically improved patient outcomes. It started at Stanford University’s d.School. When Katy Ashe was an engineering student at Stanford University, she was anxious to find ways to apply her skills. She signed up the d.School’s “Design for Extreme Affordability” class. There she met Edith Elliott. Edith had a background in international policy. They were paired with medical students Shahed Alam and Jessie Liu. Together they were assigned a group of cardiac hospitals in Bangalore. When the team visited the hospitals, they were confronted by a system stretched to the limits by demand. The hospital staff was stretched,…

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053, Katy Ashe and Edith Elliott, Noora Health | Design Thinking to Improve Health Outcomes

030, Jeffrey Hollender, Sustain Natural | A Systems Thinking Approach to Greater Good

If Jeffrey Hollender’s name is familiar to you, it would not be surprising. As the cofounder of Seventh Generation, the author of a half dozen books, and a frequent speaker on using business to do good in the world, he’s a natural fit for a conversation with Social Entrepreneur. But he did not come on the podcast to talk about his past accomplishments. He’s busy taking a systemic approach to his latest business Sustain Natural. Through Sustain, Jeffrey is connecting the dots between condoms, hunger, health care, poverty, and climate change. Yes, that’s right. I said condoms…and lubricants and wipes. All of which are fair trade, organic and sustainably produced. And,…

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030, Jeffrey Hollender, Sustain Natural | A Systems Thinking Approach to Greater Good

014, Steele Lorenz, MyRain | Saving Water Resources through Business Innovation

MyRain distributes efficient irrigation equipment to smallholder farmers in India. It is not an innovation of technology; drip irrigation has existed and been a proven technology for many years. By using drip irrigation, you can increase crop yield by 50% to 100% and decrease water consumed between 20% and 50% when compared with flood irrigation. Increasing yields can drastically improve the quality of life for smallholder farmers. Globally, 70% of freshwater is used for agricultural purposes. It has been estimated that by 2050 the world population will be around 9 billion. With the emerging global middle class, the demand for food will double. This places tremendous pressure on our freshwater…

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014, Steele Lorenz, MyRain | Saving Water Resources through Business Innovation

005, Rick Hooper, Barefoot Power | Clean Energy in Developing Countries

As a Vice President for Philips Electronics, Rick Hooper was actively involved in Corporate Social Responsibility, or CSR. While in Thailand, he and his wife supported a local school and charity. There, he began to see the difference that for-profit companies can make. Today, Rick is the CEO of Barefoot Power, a for-profit social enterprise that assists people in developing countries to access affordable renewable energy while reducing poverty and creating new markets. Today, Barefoot Power has revenues in the tens of millions of dollars. In this episode of the podcast, we talk about: The trend toward and the challenges of corporate social responsibility (CSR). The ambition of the developing…

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005, Rick Hooper, Barefoot Power | Clean Energy in Developing Countries