I believe that social entrepreneurship is important because of the valuable impact the companies have, and the ways in which they better our society. The people that feel that someone else needs their hours, brainpower, and effort, that their work and life must have purpose and provide value for someone else, are the little people that make the world just a little bit better. Much like individual volunteers, or large non-profits, social entrepreneurship ventures aid in bridging the gap between these two types of organizations.
The organization that my partner Prath and I are placed at is called ProsperUS, and it is a direct example of being a social venture. PropserUS supporting minority, refugee, immigrant, and impoverished entrepreneurs in Detroit, some of whom are socially focused and others less so. ProsperUS participates in enterprise training, micro-lending, technical support, and guides entrepreneurs through challenges. Through lending money and support, ProsperUS empowers and opens a variety of doors for its enterprises to enter. While ProsperUS isn’t necessarily a “social entrepreneurship,” they do provide social work for entrepreneurs, who then are able to create their own small businesses. While ProsperUS is an untraditional definition of social entrepreneurship, I believe it embodies all of the aspects of one. It is outward focused, on a community rife with low-ceilings with visible limits, it inspires and aids in the creation of new businesses. ProsperUS allows for entrepreneurs to succeed in providing all the support and framework to do so. Through Prath and my work on creating a google mymap businessmap with data on each business, we have seen a variety of business. From a lemon cream pie company, to a chordless flat iron company, and then to an organic, all-natural, home cleaning company, we have seen the vast variety that these entrepreneurs have dreamed-up and subsequently created with the help of ProsperUS’ loans and support.
To me, being a social entrepreneur is important because it is the epitome of leading and creating a business with purpose. I want to lead a life with purpose, through incorporating my interests and skills in the business world for the good of someone else. Whether that’s at a nonprofit or at a large consulting firm, helping someone in need is something that I have come to realize I value. If I have appreciated and needed skills, I see an opening to do something socially beneficial: in my eyes, it’s almost a responsibility I have to the world.