Last week I introduced you to four young social innovators under the title of More Refreshing Than Miley Cyrus. As part of a continuing series here are four more. What I have noticed about those you are meeting and those you will meet, is how effortlessly they move across and within sectors. They are prepared to work with and for government, business, the civil sector or some hybrid of their own creation, to advance their social and environmental objectives. Their 'comfort zone' appears expansive and effortless. As a consequence collaboration comes more natural to them than those of us who grew up in one sector. And, they are global citizens understanding that challenges or problems don't end at national borders whether it be human rights abuses, pollution, democracy or international development aid.
Daphne Nederhorst: Daphne created SAWA Global which identifies talented leaders (Heroes) in the world's fifty poorest countries and supports them to spread and scale up their poverty fighting initiatives. Among her strategies she links mentors, funders and consultants from the developed world with each leader/hero. Daphne's approach dispels the myth that there are no local leaders or that people are incapable of solving their own problems. I have met several of her Heroes and they would be wealthy and successful in Canada if they choose to move here. They have chosen to remain in their home countries without the infrastructure we take for granted. Meet some of these individuals on video at: http://sawaglobal.org/
John Richardson: John founded Pivot Legal Society http://www.pivotlegal.org to use the law to address the root causes that keep people at the margins of society. He
has re-invented a model of legal advocacy to support people who are
homeless, drug addicts or sex workers.
John's work is modeled after the campaigns of Mahatma Gandhi. His
grassroots, asset based approach to public policy combines pro bono
lawyers, creative communication strategists and people who speak for
themselves with dignity and confidence. Pivot has also created a co-op for
lawyers and sponsors a 'much talked about' annual photo contest for residents of the Downtown Eastside in Vancouver, Hope in the Shadows http://www.hopeinshadows.com/
Nicole Rycroft: Nicole founded Canopy -transforming business for our planet, ten years ago. Her achievements are substantial. She made the Harry Potter book series the greenest books in history with 23 publishers switching to ecological paper. Over 600 publishers have adopted environmental practices including Lonely Planet. She is creating a new market for paper made from the waste of wheat rather than using wood fibre. This alone has the potential to save 400 Million trees in North America. Not surprising among Canopy's values are: restless leadership, collaboration and solutions focused. Check out more: http://canopyplanet.org/
Shauna Sylvester: Shauna has had many highlights in her young career including founding IMPACS a genre breaking communications, international development, public policy, non profit. Her latest initiative is Canada's World, a national dialogue to discuss Canada's role in the world. Their three years of activities have ended but the results of the deliberations; how to manuals on how to host community dialogues, kitchen round-tables and foreign policy camps; multi- author blog containing fresh perspectives on foreign policy and a fascinating historic time line of Canadian foreign policy will remain on line for five years. http://www.canadasworld.ca/
NOTE: All these individuals are associated with Ashoka – a global fellowship of social entrepreneurs www.ashoka.org . On Wednesday night I host a reception to introduce Ashoka Canada to Vancouver. All the above will be attending. Check out other amazing Ashoka fellows. www.canada.ashoka.org