After the success of last year’s GSBI Social Entrepreneurship at the Margins (SEM) accelerator program, I am pleased to share our second cohort of social entrepreneurs supporting refugees, migrants, and human trafficking survivors.
We opened applications in May of this year and received almost 100 applications from entrepreneurs from all over the world. For the past month, we have been deep in the application review, interview, and selection process.
We are welcoming an impressive cohort of 19 organizations, of which 12 are women-led enterprises. These organizations are nonprofit or for-profit businesses and, on average, have been in operation for 3-4 years. They are creating impact in over 25 countries, mainly in Europe, East Africa, North America, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia. Of the 19, ImmSchools, Kakuma Ventures, and Tulip Addis Water Filter are led by migrants or refugees themselves, which drove them to create organizations from their own personal experiences.
Our entrepreneurs are working to fill the gaps that humanitarian aid simply isn’t meeting, and to empower these vulnerable populations to be architects of their own futures. We are seeing the following trends from the cohort in their impact:
Employment opportunities for refugees or human trafficking survivors
Entrepreneurial training for refugees
Social services in person or through online platforms for refugees or migrants
Quality education for refugees or migrants
As we welcome this new SEM cohort, we are honored to support organizations doing work that is truly inspiring and needed to solve this great issue of displaced people and modern-day slavery.
Check out our press release announcing this cohort, along with our partnership with Georgetown University’s Beeck Center for Social Impact + Innovation. Together, we’ll bring these exceptional social entrepreneurs to Washington, DC in June 2020 for an in-residence program and investor showcase.