British Council in partnership with Arthur Guinness Projects, are proud to award six Malaysian social enterprises with the Entrepreneurs for Good Social Enterprise Award. They will receive financial and business support of up to RM240, 000 to upscale their social business ventures to ensure sustainability of their social business models and to create a positive social impact in the community.
Now in its third year, the application process began with a series of roadshows and workshops held across Malaysia earlier in the year. 14 promising social enterprises were shortlisted and invited to pitch for the award to a panel of judges comprised of industry leaders and others active within the social enterprise sector.
Each of the winning six social enterprises impressed the judges with their ideas, business plans, and projection for sustainability. They will each receive seed funding and mentorship support of up to RM40, 000 to help guide them through the formative years of their businesses and achieve their goal of bettering their communities.
The six winning social enterprises are:
Focus: Education, Low-Income
Arus provides introductory training courses in coding and programming at various schools and learning centres. Proceeds are channelled towards hosting free courses at schools in low-income communities which provide a more thorough curriculum that integrates science, technology, arts, engineering and mathematics in all of its in class projects. Through hands on and project based learning, Arus hopes to bring meaning and relevance to the students learning, thus motivating them to do better in school and help to close the education and opportunity gap in low-income communities.
Focus: Volunteering, NGOs
Do Something Good bridges the gap between potential volunteers, NGOs looking for volunteers, and companies who wish to engage in CSR activities. Working with companies to develop CSR activities and team-building for their employees, Do Something Good aims to build long-term partnerships between volunteers and the NGOs which need their help. By setting up sustainable and scalable volunteering programmes for these NGOs, Do Something Good lays the groundwork for them to continue to attract and effectively make use of volunteers in the long run.
Focus: Traditional Craftsmanship, Employment, Environment
Earth Heir supports the training of artisans to preserve traditional heritage skills while also reducing unemployment and poverty by creating partnerships to connect their luxury products to the right markets. Seeking to ensure fair working conditions and create sustainable livelihoods, Earth Heir also supports underprivileged groups including UNHCR refugees and the disabled and incorporates environmental stewardship at every stage. Products are handcrafted using eco-friendly materials, and a portion of the proceeds go towards charities supporting women at risk and trafficking survivors.
Focus: Animal Welfare
Fur Kids aims to open a suite of pet services, including a ‘pet café’, ‘pet hotel’, grooming, and rehabilitation services. In addition to enabling pet owners to spend more time with their pets, they provide opportunities for education on pet nutrition, care, and ownership. Proceeds from these pet services will be channelled towards Fur Kids’ main objective – rescuing and rehabilitating injured and abused animals from dangerous situations.
Focus: Employment, Youth, People with Disabilities
MyBakery works with young people and those from challenging backgrounds to train them in the art of baking. By teaching these people the skills they need to create authentic, healthy baked produce using traditional recipes, MyBakery provides future opportunities for employment and business ownership in a growing market. The goods produced will be supplied to an external market as well as at a café on the premises, with the proceeds reinvested into the training programmes. Customers can also choose to ‘pay it forward’, by purchasing a product which will then be donated to children from underprivileged schools.
Focus: Environmental Sustainability
Build for Tomorrow provides consultancy services to enable businesses to become more environmentally friendly with their energy use and carbon footprint. In addition, Build for Tomorrow offers design and building services to create low-cost, environmentally sustainable homes and buildings which reduce waste and energy consumption for those from low-income communities. Involving volunteers and community members in training and building projects enables the transfer of knowledge of sustainable building methods and energy management techniques, for use by communities in planning a sustainable and environmentally-sound future.