Gradual Journey in The Making of Entrepreneurs, By Educating and Funding Their Endeavours

  • Prodigy
  • Wednesday, 23 Feb, 2022
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Gradual Journey in The Making of Entrepreneurs

At Enactus,

WE BELIEVE IN STUDENTS WHO TAKE ENTREPRENEURIAL ACTION FOR OTHERS TO CREATE A BETTER WORLD FOR US ALL.

Enactus is the world’s largest experiential learning platform dedicated to creating a better world while developing the next generation of entrepreneurial leaders and social innovators. The Enactus network of global business, academic, and student leaders are unified by our vision—to create a better, more sustainable world.

Enactus has 72,000 students entrepreneurial, values-driven social innovators across 1,730 campuses in 36 countries, positively impacting the lives of 1.3 million people each year. Guided by educators and supported by business leaders, they conduct needs assessments in their community, identify potential solutions to complex issues and implement community impact projects. This results in communities benefiting from collaboration and fresh innovation, plus students gain the valuable experience to advance personal and professional lives.

As in business, Enactus believes that competition encourages innovation. For Enactus, this means more lives are impacted every day. The Enactus Headquarters operations are led by a highly motivated staff of more than 60 professionals. In addition to the Headquarters team, more than 100 staff manage the day-to-day operations of each Enactus country. Together, these individuals make up a diverse and talented group of leaders committed to achieving the Enactus mission around the world. They aim to provide a platform for university students to build community development projects that help harness people’s ingenious talent and improve their livelihood. Guided by academics and supported by business leaders, the students not only learn key entrepreneurial skills, going beyond the limits of textbooks, but also receive a unique opportunity to transform lives and emerge as leaders.

Enactus in India

Kirori Mal College, one of the most esteemed colleges of the University of Delhi, located in New Delhi, India, was established in 1954. It offers undergraduate and graduate courses in Science, Arts, Humanities, and Commerce.

Enactus is also making its inroads in major colleges of India. One such initiative has been started at Delhi University’s Kirori Mal College. Since its inception in April 2016, Enactus KMC has been striving hard to create an impact in the lives of people by running various projects. Arpan Ray is one of the students of Kirori Mal College, DU. He is also a member of Enactus Kirori Mal College.

Enactus is an international, non-profit, and student-run organization that empowers communities in need of sustenance through social entrepreneurship. Arpan says,

“Enactus KMC members are currently undertaking the following projects, Project Dor aims to empower a community of migrant women while reviving the art form of Tie and Dye. Project Syahi aims to tackle the plastic menace through paper pens while also uplifting a community of underserved women. Project JanBhoomi aims to combat land degradation and waste management through flower and vermicomposting techniques. Nirav is an initiative that provides pro bono mental health services.”

Many NPOs like Enactus KMC have KMC students in management positions; almost all use volunteers. Enactus KMC has no owners for surplus profits to go to and any surplus after operating expenses is distributed to the beneficiaries. They often rely on the dedication of students who believe in their cause because it’s hard for them to compete with private-sector wages. Scrupulous accounting, transparency, and accountability are essential to the continuation of operations, as mismanaged or misdirected funds could result in the loss of funding from both public and private sources and loss of status, hence is actively handled by the members of Enactus KMC.

Following are the projects that Enactus KMC is working on and even generating enough funds to take care of the continuation of the project:

Project DOR

Project Dor aims to improve the lives of a community of migrant women from Bihar and Jharkhand while also reviving the traditional art form of tie and dye by producing timeless classics which always remain in vogue.

Objectives of Dor:

●   Providing the women with a sustainable business model and imparting all the skills required to run it successfully.

●   Providing them with the basic education necessary for day-to-day business activities.

●   Promoting the traditional art of tie and dye that remains in vogue regardless of the passage of time and evolution of fashion.                 

●   Improving the standard of living of the women and their community. Teaching them the importance of and improving the level of sanitation, cleanliness, hygiene, health, etc.

●   Instilling a sense of entrepreneurship in women so that they can use their skills and potential for a better living.

Women play important roles in the rural economy as farmers, wage earners, and entrepreneurs. They also take responsibility for the well-being of the members of their families, including food provision and care for children and the elderly. Rural women’s unpaid work, particularly in poor households, often includes collecting wood and water. Women from indigenous and grassroots communities are often also custodians of traditional knowledge, which is key for their communities’ livelihoods, resilience, and culture. Yet, women in rural areas face constraints in engaging in economic activities because of gender-based discrimination and social norms, disproportionate involvement in unpaid work, and unequal access to education, healthcare, property, and financial and other services.

Tie and dye have quite a colourful history in the textile industry of India. It is amongst the oldest traditions that are still in practice. As the name suggests, the art involves tying and dyeing fabrics into various colours. Project Dor is bringing this traditional art into life by making underprivileged women opt for it as a means of earning and adopting better living conditions.

The number of earning females is rising in the village and the urge of finding employment has brought women and girls of nearby villages to connect with Dor. Seeing this new source of income, women who have skills other than doing household chores are now a part of Dor. Dor empowers 4 ladies residing in Delhi who have been the beneficiaries of the project since 2017.

Revival of the traditional handicraft of the desert is bringing women into the foreground. At the same time, they are earning without moving out of their houses. This small move by women towards their own development will bring an unexpected change in the village as well as their future generations.

Project SYAHI

Project Syahi endeavours to achieve a plastic-free world by replacing plastic pens with pens made of upcycled paper with a plantable seed at the rear end.

Objective of SYAHI

●   Introducing an alternative to plastic pens to reduce the plastic menace.                                                      

●   Providing the community with a sustainable business model to help them become independent and successful entrepreneurs.

●   Promoting the idea of planting trees for a greener tomorrow. 

These paper pens, a great alternative to plastic ballpoint pens, don’t just address the plastic menace but also contain seeds that can grow into trees. The seemingly innocuous ballpoint pens we lose more than we use them! We trash them instead of bothering to buy new refills. Do we even realize that these millions of small writing instruments sold daily are made of plastic and contribute to the degradation of the environment?

Plastics are composed of a non-biodegradable polymeric material. This convenient material has choked water bodies, landfills, and incinerators. Only 9 percent of plastic produced each year is recycled. Earth is screaming for help, and this is the time to switch to a sustainable lifestyle. We, the citizens, at the ground level, need to make changes. Reducing the use of single-use plastics and minimizing stationary waste are some simple ways. This can be done by using eco-friendly paper pens instead of conventional plastic ones that end up in dumpsters and add to the enormous plastic burden.

Project Syahi encourages the use of pens is widespread from schools and workplaces to households. Thousands of pens are disposed of each day, and they end up piling up in landfills and water bodies. There’s no end to the misery caused by plastic pens. Eco-friendly paper pens aim to reduce the stationary waste menace. These also make an excellent gift to promote an eco-friendly lifestyle. Being caring towards mother earth and being conscious of how choices affect the future of this planet never gets out of fashion. Eco-friendly paper pens are 95 percent plastic-free and are a doable step in reducing the increasing plastic contribution. Grow your own green babies and be a plant parent today with Syahi!

Project JANBHOOMI

Project JanBhoomi aims to tackle the problem of land degradation and waste management, which is a source of major concern given that the amount of fertile land is continuously decreasing in contrast to the world population.

Objective of JanBhoomi

●   Replacing chemical fertilizers that degrade the soil with continuous use.

●   Including waste management composting under the ambit of the Project, thereby reducing improper disposal of waste.

●   Combating eutrophication by encouraging flower composting, as an alternative to chemical fertilizers.

●   Promoting an organic lifestyle and spreading awareness about the diminishing green cover in urban areas through our gardening toolkit.

The US Environmental Protection Agency reported that more than 40% of the national priority list sites are co-contaminated with heavy metals and heavy polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Pollution of the environment by hydrocarbons, pesticides, heavy metals, and other chemicals is a serious threat to the environment. Globally, 3.2 billion people are affected by land degradation, especially rural communities, smallholder farmers, and the very poor. The world population is projected to increase by about 35 percent to 9.7 billion in 2050. However, pressure on the global land resource is increasing due to other factors as well, such as agricultural production systems made less resilient by the loss of biodiversity, and natural factors.

Composting is a way of harnessing the natural process of decomposition to speed up the decay of waste. The history of composting dates back to the history of early agriculture. Many find that composting is as much of an art as a science. Recent concern about managing wastes and producing food in an environmentally sound manner has led to a renewed interest in small-scale, backyard composting as well as an interest in developing large-scale, commercial and municipal composting systems.

NIRAV

 According to Arpan,

“We at Nirav strive to provide pro bono services to anyone seeking help to promote the cause of mental health and break the stigma surrounding mental illnesses. Our online services which are only a few clicks away are incredibly convenient for everyone. Our team of professionals ensures the well-being of the individuals providing them with the required services at the right time.”

Objective of NIRAV

●   Increasing accessibility as Nirav contributes to making therapy available to all sections of society.

●   De-stigmatizing mental health issues by the spread of awareness to remove the taboo around mental health.

●   Unburdening emotional distress, as a project helps mentally and emotionally distressed individuals by providing them free therapy.

●   Promoting conversations regarding mental health, by emphasizing the need to have free conversations about the importance of mental health without any guilt or shame.

●   Maintaining confidentiality by whatever you share during therapy sessions is completely confidential, prioritising your security over everything else.

Over the past two decades, people have learned more about mental illness and most believe treatment is effective. However, the public is now more likely to believe that people with mental illness are dangerous and unpredictable. Further, the stigma associated with substance abuse disorders is high, with people tending to blame those who are ill for their habits. Because of those prejudices and misunderstandings, many people are afraid to go public with their illness or seek help. Untreated disorders led to an estimated $417 billion in annual costs related to lost productivity, crime, and health care.

NIRAV is all about sharing your mental health journey with others. Sharing your story about mental illness or recovery from a mental illness can be empowering both for you and for others who are struggling with a mental illness. Use your story to prove that harmful stereotypes about mental illness are not true, and encourage others to speak up and seek help.

To conclude,

A social entrepreneur seeks to serve the social needs of a community within a small geographical area. These entrepreneurial initiatives could be anything from creating job opportunities for marginalized members to building a community centre. Social entrepreneurs like members of Enactus KMC work directly with members of the community. This means more vested interests and a slower decision process, but it comes with the advantage of long-term solutions. This is where most people start, as a change in your own community is instantly visible. You can see the results of such social entrepreneurship almost immediately and talk to people you are helping directly. These entrepreneurs are focused on social, not material gain, meaning they prioritize social well-being over traditional business needs. They reinvest any profits into the business to facilitate the further expansion of services.


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