Social entrepreneurship is on the rise. Sixty percent of all social enterprises today were founded only within the past eight years, according to Harvard Business Review. There are many passionate, energetic people willing to roll up their sleeves to help rid the world of poverty, hunger, joblessness, lack of water and proper sanitation, and other enormous problems. Yet often their efforts fall by the wayside, usually due to a lack of sufficient funding.
What’s the best model for success: A for-profit with a charitable mission? Social impact investing? A traditional philanthropic foundation? And once your organization is up and running, how do you ensure its long-term survival?
At the recent Wharton Africa Business Forum, three social entrepreneurs described their various financing approaches and the issues they are tackling on the African continent: from protecting children from serious water-borne illnesses, to providing families with alternatives to dangerous kerosene lamps, to training unconventional candidates for software jobs.