"The 2015 goal to halve the proportion of people living without sanitation is running 150 years behind schedule.”
—WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme for Water Supply and Sanitation 2010
"The 2015 goal to halve the proportion of people living without sanitation is running 150 years behind schedule.”
Editor's Note: This article was written by Tsega Belachew, Global Content and Engagement Manager for Ashoka: Innovators for the Public. This article was first featured on AllAfrica.com on 29 July 2014. RLabs, founded by Marlon Parker, is an innovation movement that transforms youth in troubled communities, gangsters, dropouts and ex-convicts, into changemakers.
From a pool of more than 200 entries, the short-listing team at Ashoka Changemakers has selected 86 Semi-Finalists of the Building Vibrant Communities: Activating Empathy to Create Change challenge.
Video caption: Early Entry Prize Winner and Semi-Finalist iLead+Design submitted this video illustrating its unique model for teaching students empathy skills and how to use design thinking to solve problems.
How many times have you been told to exercise more, to eat a little healthier or to sleep a little longer? And how many times have you actually got out there and done it? Probably not as often as you’d like.
What is needed to get people to actively support environmental sustainability?
“Marketing,” says Kevin Davies, Ashoka American Express Emerging Innovator and founder of Green Start, an organization committed to reducing waste in Calgary, Canada and educating Calgarians about the impact of their personal decisions on the environment around them.
“I believe that marketing could well be the missing piece of the puzzle. I believe in marketing as a force for good.”
Project Happiness (PH) teaches students the skills to build emotional resilience, self-awareness, and empathy. Informed by neuroscience, positive psychology, and mindfulness, PH “teaches kids to be happy and strong from the inside” and helps adults strengthen social and emotional skills as well, said founder Randy Taran.
More than 200 entries were received for the Building Vibrant Communities competition! We’d like to say a huge THANK YOU to everyone who entered. Due to the overwhelming response, we are pushing back our timeline one week and will be announcing Semi-Finalists on July 24.
Video caption: A trailer for the film produced by Early Entry Prize Winner and Semi-Finalist Project Happiness. The film is part of Project Happiness' set of tools for helping young people and adults strengthen the skills of empathy, emotional resilience, and self-awareness.
Ashoka Fellow Stephen Leafloor is creating young leaders among First Nations and Inuit communities affected by issues such as sexual abuse, suicide, depression, family violence and school desertion. Using a blend of hip-hop dance and music and traditional Inuit performance arts as a hook, he guides youth and other community members to create comprehensive networks of support and solutions to these mental health crises.
Editor's Note: This article was written by Eme Essien Lore, Senior Associate Director of The Rockefeller Foundation Africa Regional Office.
“This is your life. Do what you love. And do it often.” These lines introduce the Holstee Manifesto, an inspiration to everyone looking to make a positive change in their life. Michael Radparvar, co-founder of Holstee, shares his journey as a young social entrepreneur.
by David Lubell, founder and Executive Director of Welcoming America
Why should a local government care about welcoming immigrants and becoming an actively empathetic institution? Not only do immigrants add social and civic value to towns and cities, they also help their communities become stronger economically. More localities are recognizing this, and with immigration reform stalled at the federal level, they are taking the lead to attract and welcome their immigrant neighbors.
We share perspectives, insights and analysis from the private, public, citizen sectors and from youth addressing the question “Whose job is youth employment in Africa?" in a series of articles produced in partnership with the Fair Observer.
Editor's Note: This article was written by Solomon Appiah, a Public Policy Researcher and Contributing Editor at Fair Observer. This article first appeared on Fair Observer on July 7, 2014. Appiah highlights the importance of improving youth employability in Africa if African youth are to become a tranformational force for good.
The correlation between educational attainment and employment prospects is clear. Those with tertiary qualifications are far more likely to access the labor market, with only 12.6% unemployment among holders of diplomas and higher certificates, and only 5.2% among those who have degrees.
When everyone plays, everyone wins where healthy lifestyles are concerned. If we want our children to be active, there’s no room on the bench.
It’s an uncomfortable truth: people are still trapped in slavery, and not just in agriculture and manufacturing, the two sectors that may come to mind immediately. “Both the consumer and industry need to think beyond the tag,” said Arati Sureddi, Ashoka American Express Emerging Innovator and founder of LOTUS Alliance, an organization committed to cutting across sectors to fight human trafficking.
Editor's Note: In partnership with Fair Observer, an on-line journal that examines the deeper issues behind the news, we will explore the theme: Who is responsible for addressing youth employment in Africa? From June-September 2014, we will be developing online events and a series of articles that will gather multiple perspectives and provide a 360° analysis on the topic.
Sports like dodgeball, track, soccer, and basketball and intermittent fitness tests have been the norm for physical education classes.
A lot of time is spent discussing why education reform is important and why more playful learning methodologies benefit students.
Ashoka, the Zermatt Summit Foundation, Fondation Guilé, DPD and Boehringer Ingelheim are delighted to announce the winners of the European competition “Social & Business Co-Creation: collaboration for impact”. They were awarded during a ceremony at the prestigious Zermatt Summit, on June 27, 2014
Please join us in congratulating the inspiring competition winners:
You’re ignited by your vision, and you feel a deep urge to make it happen. Perhaps you’re already making it happen, and you’re busy managing the manifestation of your dreams.
See an offender, upload their picture on Facebook. Police force in four major Indian cities—Delhi, Bangalore, Hyderabad and Gurgaon— are taking a unique approach to catching drunk-driving offenders by enlisting the help of local residents.
What makes a winning entry? Top entries meet the Assessment Criteria, and they also make a compelling case for the problem they are trying to solve, and for their specific model for achieving impact. Here are four ways to accomplish this:
Αθήνα – 23 Ιουνίου, 2014 – Με περισσότερες από 90 συμμετοχές έκλεισε στις 19 Μαίου 2014 η προθεσμία υποβολής συμμετοχής στον διαγωνισμό «Προορισμός: Αλλαγή. Νέες Λύσεις για την Ελλάδα» (Destination: Change. New Solutions for Greece) που διοργάνωσαν η Ashoka, η Ελληνική Πρωτοβουλία (Τhe Hellenic Initiative), το Κοινωφελές Ίδρυμα Ιωάννη Σ. Λάτση, η Boehringer Ingelheim Ελλάς και η SAP Hellas με στόχο την εύρεση καινοτόμων λύσεων για κοινωνική αλλαγή στην Ελλάδα.
Athens, June 24, 2014 – Ashoka Greece announced today that 20 finalists have been selected in the first Changemakers competition for Greece. The «Destination: Change. New Solutions for Greece» competition is an initiative by Ashoka, The Hellenic Initiative, the John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation, Boehringer Ingelheim Ellas, and SAP Hellas to source innovative solutions for social change in Greece.
The finalists, selected from more than 90 entries, represent the most innovative and promising solutions in the following areas of social impact for Greece:
Solutions to the world’s most pressing problems are exciting. The opportunities are global, interconnected and interdependent. Business' resources dwarf those of the philanthropic and public sectors combined. All fixes require leaders with vision and capacity to build systems for change across industries and borders. Yet alone, now and in the future, no one of these sectors can put together the social entrepreneurial ecosystems necessary for major innovation and change to work at scale.
The 2014 Unilever Sustainable Living Young Entrepreneurs Awards in partnership with the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL) and Ashoka is seeking young people aged 30 and under with practical, scaleable initiatives designed to tackle the challenge of sustainable living.
Unilever Sustainable Living Young Entrepreneurs Awards
Last weekend, Bill and Melinda Gates addressed Stanford’s graduating class, and urged them to use empathy and optimism to change the world. The couple delivered a poignant speech illustrating why innovation and optimism alone were not enough to make the world better.
Bill said, “Even in dire situations, optimism can fuel
Education hasn’t changed that much since the days of armor-clad knights and candlelight—well before the printing press and, more recently, the internet made information a commodity. Educators lecture.
We’ll be posting the latest news from around the web on innovative empathy projects that help build vibrant communities! Check back weekly for more news and insights about putting empathy into action.
The world’s first Empathy Museum
Written by Guest Blogger and 2013 Emerging Innovator Curt Bowen
When I was 18, my best friend Joseph and I planned to design an innovative way for Central American communities to make their own biofuels in order to become fuel independent and fight poverty. We were going to teach this technology to universities, citizen sector organizations, and farming associations—and, we were going to do it all by driving and living in a biodiesel powered bus through Central America.
Speed skating Olympian Cathy Priestner Allinger shares her personal inspiration behind a new media initiative at ViaSport, a not-for-profit organization responsible for providing strategic leadership to sport in B.C. and increasing levels of physical activity at every stage of life, in every community.
Ashoka,the Zermatt Summit Foundation, Fondation Guilé, DPD and Boehringer Ingelheim are delighted to announce the finalists of the European competition “Social & Business Co-Creation: collaboration for impact”. We were excited to see so many innovative collaborations led by social-mission organizations, traditional businesses and public institutions in Europe: we have received 338 projects from 34 European countries!
Please join us in congratulating the 15 finalist projects:
Building Vibrant Communities: Activating Empathy to Create Change
New online competition will award $500,000 in prizes to initiatives that activate empathy in order to strengthen communities in five California counties
"Empathy-based ethics are the essential foundation for 21st century changemaking," says Bill Drayton, the CEO and founder of Ashoka. "If we had to name a single, overarching success factor among our global network of social entrepreneurs, it would be the ability to put empathy into action."
With an increasing child obesity rate, Canadian children are more and more at risk of developing serious chronic conditions, such as type II diabetes, cancers and hypertension.