Social entrepreneurship is attracting a growing number of individuals to start enterprises that sell ethically sourced goods online.
In the age of social media and the power of digital influence, we are bombarded by news stories, brand stories, personal stories. Platforms like Instagram make the world smaller by bringing forth awareness to issues that different communities face.
As consumers, we specifically look beyond the product and into the story that set off the initiative in the first place. When we make a purchase, we want to understand the production process, workers’ working conditions, and if what we are about to buy will affect the environment negatively.
Here, we’ve rounded up three of our favourite purpose-driven businesses who use Instagram successfully to make an impact online and on the ground.
SheNative was founded on the basis to empower Indigenous women and girls by supporting their talents and endeavours. Instead of using society’s negative stereotypes of Indigenous women to build a charitable case, SheNative provides women with a platform to create their own opportunities, celebrate their individual passions and boost their confidence through promoting their craft. The initiative supports Indigenous artisans, designers and businesses through partnership programs and promoting their works on a carefully curated Shopify platform. They are also committed to donating 10% of their profits to social causes that align with their mission and interests.
Speak Your Silence
The Speak Your Silence initiative is on a mission to silence the social stigma of talking about child sexual abuse. The iconic symbol of the stitch represents the voice frequency of a person. By wearing the stitch symbol on the t-shirt, the wearer is supporting the cause to end this silence and encourage a safe space for victims to bring their stories to light. The initiative has a goal of selling 100,000 t-shirts by the end of year 2017. To date, they have sold over 27,300. The website also includes links for counselling and donations, further providing accessibility to a cause that is often silenced by fears, guilt and shame. Follow them on social media with hashtag #speakyoursilence.
Zuri was borne out of a chance encounter between two Nairobi women at a wedding. The founders’ pursuit that one versatile dress fit for all women of different body types for multiple occasions is relatable. By supporting the brand, consumers can not only shop through a plethora of the same dress in various colours and patterns but also support sustainable economies and fair wages. Dresses are made in small batches and of African waxed cotton. They are produced ethically in partnership with local charities that support wildlife preservation and employ women workers as a way to provide an alternative to prostitution in Africa.
Does your business have a story that aligns with a social cause? Tell us your story on Instagram, @jointdevelopmnt. We’d love to hear it!