Stop! Halt! Pull yourselves towards yourselves. All this teen talk is so fabulously focused but lets’ consider other points of view and approaches. Have you heard of a social entrepreneur? No, not jolling with your china’s or your china’s china’s in a new party venue; this in fact is a pretty profound entrepreneurial endeavour in itself.
These are individuals with innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing problems. For example, things like women’s rights, conservation, poverty, unemployment. Rather than leaving these social needs to the government or business sectors, these often possessed (in a good way) campaigners find out what’s not working and then solve the problem by changing the system, spreading the solution and persuading entire societies to take new leaps.
Just as entrepreneurs change the face of business, social entrepreneurs act as change agents for society. Our model citizen, no really he’s hot and a model, is young Jamie-Thurston-Wyngaard. Currently in his final year at the University of the Western Cape (UWC), Jamie was awarded the UWC Student Achiever of the Year 2011 for his involvement, in amongst others things, social entrepreneurship.
So what gets his goat and how is he effecting the change? He is passionate about alleviating poverty and creating a safer, cleaner, greener planet. This doesn’t mean he goes around like the Pied Piper with baskets of sweets giving them to poor children or volunteering to assist with extra murals after school (although he did at one time). What he does do is he works with business people to create new businesses or organisations that will help change a social problem.
His current focus, in his capacity as Vice Chairperson of the international organisation Students for Free Enterprise (SIFE) is to empower communities’ education focusing on sustainability and entrepreneurships. Jamie believes in giving a hand up not a hand out. “We go into communities and have successfully enabled growth by growing gardens, providing training and support. In so doing fighting poverty and pollution,” he said.
This will certainly be a face to keep an eye on for his insight, passion and integrity as he brings change solutions both locally and globally.