Loans repaid with pride

Auckland social enterprise advocate, Bevin Fitzsimons shares his experience of social lending and the importance of interconnectedness when it comes to impactful lending.

How did an international loan fund make hundreds of loans over twenty-six years with 100% repayment?

Here’s the story….

For six years, I was Director of the Geneva-based Ecumenical Church Loan Fund (ECLOF). It raised money from church donors – initially for schools, hospitals, churches etc. In 1968, it began making economic development loans to communities and social enterprises in thirty-two countries. A local committee of bankers and experienced community developers, in each country, publicised and helped loan applicants plan their projects. Typical projects were: fish farms in Myanmar; tractor purchases in Tanzania; cycle rickshaws in India; wells and plantations in Malaysia. The local committee kept in touch with each borrower.


Soon after approving the fish farm loan in Myanmar, the local committee also approved a loan to a similar community fish farm a short distance up the coast. The interesting thing was that the committee told the second fish farm their loan would begin fifteen months after the first fish farm borrower (and other projects) had repaid a part of their loans. The second fish farm was immediately in touch with the first one. “Can we come and see how you do it? Can we come and help you? Please repay your loan – you’re helping us when you repay”. As a result, the two communities had a good rapport.


With repeated thank-yous from borrower two, borrower one had real pride in helping borrower two by simply repaying their own loan! They were not repaying to an anonymous foreign rich organisation. They repaid to help their neighbours and to feel the pride and helpfulness of this! Borrower two also learned a lot from borrower one before their similar project began. The system also worked well two borrower’s projects were naturally complementary. For instance, when one borrower’s loan was for a tractor and another’s was for an agricultural well.


The Ecumenical Church Loan Fund also had skilled local bankers in each national committee to ensure good planning, so those bankers’ reputations were also at stake should any loans fail. Bankers were always willing to be on the national committee to help their countrymen.

Bevin Fitzsimons

Bevin Fitzsimons now coaches social enterprises and helps them be unique in their marketplace through his company, Breakthrough Strategies. To pick his brain, you can contact him at bevin@breakthroughstrategies.co.nz.

Going Walkabout in Queensland

As many of you know, PledgeMe has launched in Australia! With our experience in New Zealand crowdfunding (across project, equity and lending campaigns) and the recent changes to equity legislation here in Australia, we decided to cross the ditch.

I’ve been in Brisbane for a week now thanks to HotDesQ, and I think the best term for it is “busy in Brissie”.

I’ve met with angels, lawyers, accountants, hipsters, craft beer kids, and still seem to manage to wake up for 6am team meetings and phone calls.

I’ve pointed out typos to ASIC (they probably didn’t like that), met a bunch of awesome new friends, been to the launch of a marriage equality beer, settled into a new co-working space (Little Tokyo Two) and am slowly figuring out where I am in the city (I’ve only gotten properly lost once….).

But, most importantly, I’ve met with companies. I’ve heard where they’re at, and where they want to go next.

The Australian equity crowdfunding legislation, as it currently stands, isn’t much use for them. It currently only caters for less than 1% of Australian companies (those that are “public unlisted”). And, while companies can swap to being public unlisted, it adds a lot of compliance requirements that doesn’t make sense for a small company.

Thankfully, the Australian government listened, and are planning on extending the legislation to cover proprietary companies (which is 99% of SME’s). But, that will still take at least 6 months.

So, my plan between now and then is:

  • to get our application for an intermediary licence in and
  • to support as many companies as we can to figure out if crowdfunding makes sense for them – and what they need to do between now and then if they do decide to raise money from their crowd.

What can we offer? A wealth of experience helping companies across the ditch get ready to go out to their own crowds (not just traditional investors). We’ve seen everything from a craft brewery raise $2mil in 2 days, through to a solid haircare business top up their shareholder round with $500,000 in 90 minutes.

To launch that, I’m going for a bit of a road trip at the end of this week to meet more companies. I’ll be in:

  • Wed, 11 October – Sunshine Coast
  • Thurs, 12 October – Bundaberg
  • Fri, 13 October – Rockhampton

If you’d like to hear more about equity crowdfunding, grab a coffee, or just meet and discuss your plans send me an email on anna@pledgeme.co.nz. I’d love to meet you.

What's Up Wednesday

Kai and culture: Food stories from Aotearoa

Food tells a story. And Freerange Press wants to tell the story of New Zealand’s contemporary food identity, and how it impacts our culture.

Freerange Press crowdfunded with us last year to publish Don’t Dream It’s Over: Reimagining Journalism in New Zealand. This year, they’re reaching out to their crowd again in order to publish this cultural cookbook of food stories from Aotearoa. Through essays, profiles and recipes, Kai and Culture canvasses a range of views and stories from local food cultures, experts, and chefs – but now it needs your contributions to tell all those stories. So to find out more about why you should be pledging, we had a chat to the team at Freerange Press.

Why do you think this campaign is important?

Food is such a strong part of culture and it is a great lens through which to look at ideas and issues, because everyone shares in the experience of food. We wanted to tell the story of Aoteroa’s local food cultures because it feels like a contemporary food identity is emerging – where we are confident in our produce and where we are beginning to understand our place as a Pacific and multicultural nation.

So through talking about our food culture, and the people involved in creating local food identities, we also talk about the issues that intersect with it – from the environmental impacts in producing food through to food security and resilience. A range of chefs, producers and writers share their views and stories.

This is a cultural cookbook – recipes, essays, profiles and heaps of photos – and we hope that this format invites more people to read it and engage with our food culture and its contemporary issues.

What motivated you to reach out to your crowd?

Basically we have a cash flow problem. We are printing in New Zealand, which is expensive, so we need to make some pre-sales of the book to help pay the bill (because we need to pay this before we sell books to the bookstores). So we are asking people to order a copy of the book, which they will receive hot off the press. But we are throwing in a copy of one of our classic publications to say thank you to early supporters. And all of this just in time for Christmas!

What do you have planned for the rest of the campaign – anything for us to look forward to?

We will release some behind the scenes material of the book-making, some sneak-peak content and also run a draw for some of our lovely wares. The first 60 pledgers will go in the draw to win a wee Freerange gift pack.

Anything you’d like to shout out to your crowd?

We want to thank all the early supporters for getting behind us thus far. We also want to ask people to support us – a small, independent press – to get this book to print so that we can share our local food stories with Aotearoa.

To support Freerange Press and tell Aotearoa’s food stories, pledge to their campaign page here.

Getting social; highlights from the Social Enterprise World Forum

Last week, over 1,500 people from more than 45 countries collided in the newly rebuilt heart of Christchurch for a shared purpose: to join in the conversation about social enterprise.

Akina led the bid to host the Social Enterprise World Forum in New Zealand, and (we reckon) did a pretty rad job. Over the three day event we heard from world-leading social entrepreneurs like Jan Owen, we were star struck by MC Suzy Cato and we cheered on memorable soundbites like this one from Brianne West of Ethique:

“I look forward to the day when social enterprise is no longer the minority.”

The overarching theme was “ka koroki te manu” – creating our tomorrow. This was a theme that came through many of the sessions, with speakers and delegates keeping a keen eye on how to build financially sustainable enterprises that also build a more sustainable future.

Other cool elements to the Forum: it was a “Compostable Event” (which basically means the caterers and food trucks used only completely compostable packaging and cutlery); there were 25 tours of 30 local social enterprises across Christchurch; and there was an app which featured an Facebook-esq feed plus a contact list of everyone who attended.

 

Catching up with PledgeMe community

We also bumped into a bunch of PledgeMe alumni. Here are some cool stories of what some of them have been up to since they crowdfunded:

  • Conscious Consumers ran a successful project campaign with us in 2015 to build a “Good Spend Counter”, an app that shares your values with the businesses you shop with. Since then, over 20,000 consumers and 450 retailers have signed up to the app. Conscious Consumers is currently attempting to raise $3 million to go global.
  • Cultivate Christchurch inspires young people to “live lives they value in an urban farm environment”. During the Forum, co-founder Bailey Perryman announced that Cultivate Christchurch will be launching a crowdlending campaign involving the aptly named “Broccoli Bonds” on Thursday 12 October.  
  • The Blueskin Resilient Communities Trust crowdfunded with us in 2013 to put up a wind measurement tower in Blueskin Bay. Since then, BRCT tried to gain consent for their community owned wind project, but were rejected. Manager Scott Willis shares his reflections: “It’s hard to create paradigm change, but we’ve begun the process. We’ve had a setback that has revealed the power of the status quo in New Zealand. What’s next? We’re marshalling forces because the democratisation of energy in NZ is critical if we are to build the climate solutions our world needs.”
  • Ethique is a Christchurch-based social enterprise looking to rid the world of plastic bottles by producing solid hair and beauty products. It launched its second PledgeMe campaign during the Forum, and hit headlines for crowdfunding $500k within two hours of its campaign going live.

 

What next?

Since the Social Enterprise World Forum launched in Scotland ten years ago, it has triggered unprecedented growth in social enterprise for the countries which host it. Clearly, exciting times lie ahead for New Zealand’s social enterprise movement.

Or does it? Although we left Christchurch buzzing, we recognise social enterprise doesn’t happen on its own. In fact, we wrote about the importance of spreading the impact of social enterprises in Aotearoa here. One of the easiest ways to do so is by supporting socially driven alternatives. To see who you might like to support, check out our crowdsourced list of New Zealand social enterprises.

Social enterprise: A better way to do business

It’s time to hear from a lady who lives and breathes social enterprise. Tricia Fitzgerald has studied social enterprise for years (she’s even got a PhD in it!), and currently sits as the chair of Social Enterprise Auckland (SEA), a collaborative group of social enterprises and supporters working for sustainable social change in Auckland. She discusses the social enterprise movement and how SEA is helping to support and grow the sector in New Zealand.

Tricia

 

A much debated question: what is social enterprise and why is it important?

Social enterprise is a global movement that is steadily building momentum here in Auckland. Leaders from government, not for profit and business sectors are recognizing that social enterprise offers a unique combination of social purpose and financial independence – mixing mission with market – and it provides a new option for both customers and suppliers alike. Social enterprises are hybrid organisations that trade goods and services to achieve social, environmental, economic, and cultural outcomes. They represent a different – arguably better – way of doing business because they balance the commercial side of business with social goals or missions. In my opinion, social enterprise is going to help change the world.

If you have the choice to buy from a business that is solely commercially-focused versus one that also provides social benefits, then conscious consumers are going to choose to spend their money where it will have a positive impact. Social enterprises also provide a unique alternative to traditional social service provision. Traditionally social, environmental, economic, and cultural initiatives are developed and implemented by government, and delivered in partnership with either business or charities. Government agencies now have another option and are increasingly partnering with social enterprises to develop innovative new approaches to solving tough problems. We are now seeing long-standing social issues being addressed in proactive, sustainable and responsive ways.

 

Why was Social Enterprise Auckland created?

SEA was formed in 2012 in response to a call from Auckland Council representative, Joel Umali, to advise Council on social enterprise issues. We formally launched in 2015, and held our first event, “Beyond Purpose – Making Money Count” in July 2016. These events have become our hallmark – bringing together social entrepreneurs, supporters, funders and a variety of perspectives from public, private and community sectors to inspire, encourage and act as a collective. We’re running our next event “Creating Our Tomorrow” on Friday 22nd September as an appetiser for the upcoming Social Enterprise World Forum in Christchurch, and some tickets are still available.

 

So what do SEA care about?

Our main aims are to help grow and normalise the social enterprise sector in Auckland through providing information, connection and a public voice to social enterprises. Overall, the vision is that social enterprise becomes just another (normal) way of doing business.
It’s brilliant to see leaders like Tricia at the heart of social enterprise in New Zealand. You can become a member of SEA (for free!) to hear more about their journey, the initiatives that they’re a part of (like their upcoming social enterprise directory), and the changes that they’re helping to create in and around Auckland.

Exporting our expertise over the ditch

We’ve been watching the proposed equity crowdfunding legislation changes in Australia for a while.

 

In 2015, off the back of our second equity crowdfunding campaign, I had over 20 meetings in three days in Australia chatting to people in the know about what was coming. I wrote about it here.

At the time, I was excited about the possibility, but also a bit concerned with the almost single minded focus on “protecting mom and pop investors”, rather than supporting companies to grow.

 

It’s taken Australia a while to get their legislation across the line. From first calls for submissions in 2014 (the same year NZ launched equity crowdfunding), they’ve now announced the date that the Corporations Amendment (Crowd-sourced Funding) Act 2017 will come into effect on 29 September 2017. Last month, we provided feedback on over 300 pages of guidance notes, legislation, and templates provided by ASIC (as seen in the image….).

There are still some areas of concern:

  • How information is shared and what information companies should / shouldn’t provide – there are rules that say offer documents are not allowed to be emailed.
  • The need to be a public unlisted company, rather than a proprietary (private) company – this will be expensive for companies, and currently 99% of Australian companies are proprietary (not public).  
  • The sheer volume of guidance and regulation – it feels like over regulation to protect investors not support companies (which was my original concern)

 

If Australia over-regulates they might face the same fate as America, where unbelievably low amounts of capital were invested through crowdfunding platforms in the first year. After the regulation came into play in May 2016 only NZD $52million was invested in the first year in the whole United States of America. By comparison, New Zealand had NZD $12.4million invested through equity crowdfunding in the first year despite a population less than 2% the size of the USA.  Critics believe this is due to the cost for companies being so high due to over regulation.

 

But, despite being a bit concerned, we’ve decided the only way we can know if we want to enter the fray is to be there. So, we’re doing it. We’re expanding to Australia.

In order to do that, I’m moving. I’m heading over to Brisbane for six months to set up our Australian arm. We’re excited to see how things work over the ditch, and help as many people as possible. Why Brisbane?

 

Two reasons. First, we don’t want to be where everyone else will be competing. We want to set up our own niche, and grow from there with the support of our crowd. Sort of like how we did in it New Zealand, setting up in Wellington first before creating an office in Auckland. And, in a lot of ways, Brisbane is quite like Wellington. A smaller city comparatively, not the banking sector hub, but with a love of craft products (*cough* beer *cough*), a focus on local produce, an eclectic arts scene, and hipsters.

 

Secondly, we’ve been lucky to be selected for the HotDesq programme. That means we’ll have a ready set network, and some funding, to get set up.

 

In return, we need to help build and support the Brisbane ecosystem. Which is awesome, because that’s what we do here in New Zealand anyways. Part of my role is to actively educate and inspire entrepreneurs. And, we can’t wait to do that in Australia, taking all of the inspiration and experience from New Zealand and helping to create a new way of raising capital in Australia.

 

We think this move can only be good for PledgeMe in New Zealand: growing our reach, learning from Australia, and building a brand that helps people fund the things they care about. There are over 2.1million SME’s in Australia (compared to just under 500,000 here in New Zealand), so the opportunity is pretty clear. 

Our team will be taking on some of my responsibilities while I’m Australian based, but I will still be working with New Zealand campaigners from over the ditch. I mean, a Google Hangout from Wellington to Dunedin or Brisbane to Dunedin isn’t that much different, right?

 

If you have any tips, tricks, or folk we should definitely connect with, please comment below.

How to crowdfund community engagement

In July 2013, I was asked to come and talk about innovation for the local Wellington City Council. At the time I joked with the organiser that I didn’t actually like the word innovation, I liked the idea of doing things better. That’s probably not the best joke to make to someone with innovation in their title. But, little did I know that my ten minute talk on crowdfunding would turn into a new (and arguably better) model of community engagement for the council.

At the event I shared the story of Blueskin Resilient Community Energy Trust. A group with a very long title, and a pretty big goal.

This community group down in Dunedin want to put up a locally owned wind turbine, to power their community and fund local projects. They decided to crowdfund the money they needed to put a fence around their wind measurement tower. An $8,000 expense, and the next step towards their goal of erecting their turbine. Not only did they raise their money, but they engaged their local community in clean energy in a completely different way. They had their local residents offering rewards for their campaign, from unicycle lessons to pieces of artwork to home killing chickens.

That story resonated with two of the council workers, Zack and Nigel, and they wanted to see if they could replicate community engagement around clean energy here in Wellington.

The Low Carbon Energy Challenge was born

After a few conversations, the council partnered with us and Enspiral to deliver a small matched funded “Smart Energy Challenge”. The pilot was launched in 2014, and has been running every year since.

The basic premise is that each selected participant is supported with workshops as they develop their plans. They are expected to raise money from the community to validate the support of their idea, and that is then eligible for matched funded.

So far organisations like Space Between, Misprint, Switched on Bikes and more have raised over $180,000 in funding. The latest challenge launched last week, with applications closing on 15 August here.

Ideas selected need to focus on waste, energy, housing or transport, and will receive $1,000 as a “start up stipend”. Over eight weeks you’ll be supported through structured workshops to launch a crowdfunding campaign.

What we’ve learned

Along the way we’ve learned a few things about how community crowdfunding works:

 

Crowdfunding is always scary

Even with the support of a programme, you’re still putting yourself out there publicly asking for support. It’s scary! But, with the support of a programme and community, it’s actually more likely you’ll succeed.

 

Matched funding increases your chances (to 100%)

Every crowdfunding campaign launched under the Low Carbon / Smart Energy banner has met their crowdfunding goals. The 100% success rate shows that support building and validating campaigns increases your chances of crowdfunding success.

 

It’s easier when you’ve already got a plan you’re working towards

Getting your crowd engaged with a completely new idea can be hard. Doing the programme shows that you’re committed, but the longer you’ve been working on your plan the easier it gets. So, if you just thought of your idea last week it might be harder to get across the line than someone who has been planning their product for five years (even if that planning was just on nights and weekends).

 

Do you have a plan you’re working towards? You have until 15 August to get your applications in for the fourth year of the Low Carbon Challenge.

http://www.lowcarbonchallenge.nz/

The ugly, the bad and the good of lower income consumer lending

Robert Choy is a lender-for-good. He runs Ngā Tangata Microfinance (Ngā Tangata), providing small, fair interest-free loans to those on lower incomes, helping them break the shackles of loan sharks and payday lenders or purchase productive assets. We’ve got a common hero – Muhammad Yunus – and he also shares a common hero with my mam – Clint Eastwood! Robert shares his experience with us.

Ngā Tangata Microfinance’s Robert Choy

 

Clint Eastwood’s classic 60’s movie portrays a bounty hunter, a mercenary and a bandit, depicted in the film’s now famous title “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly”. Could the enduring name of this epic Spaghetti Western resemble the credit environment we experience in Aotearoa today?

Visiting New Zealand recently, Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus, considered the father of social business and microcredit, has said that “credit is a human right that should be treated as such” and “if we are looking for one single action which will enable the poor to overcome their poverty, I would focus on credit”.

Whether we agree with Professor Yunus or not, we’d surely promote a safe and fair credit environment within a responsible and educated society as crucial. Shameful to say, the current consumer lending environment in Aotearoa can best be described as ugly if you are on a low income, with limited financial choices before you, should you need to avail your rights to affordable credit.

Regardless of income level, crises or emergencies inevitably occur: the car will break down and we can’t get to work, the fridge will stop working, or children become ill and need to see a doctor. Once financial reserves and the generosity of family and friends are exhausted, and without access to mainstream credit sources, such situations force those on low incomes to take the only other available option: easy-access, high cost loan sharks, payday lenders or mobile traders.

Third tier finance companies provide loans with interest rates ranging from 20-40%, but the default interest rate can be up to 10% above that, with numerous extra penalty charges also added. Payday lenders provide only short term lending ideally, but at an outrageous cost, often charging at least 1.2% per day (or 438% annually). While truck vendors or mobile traders often charge no interest on purchases, their prices are inflated up to three times the norm, and administration and fees will ensure they reap more than 100% profit on every transaction. Unlike many parts of the world, in New Zealand there is no legal limit on interest rates or on the total cost of credit. Both these protections are critical to address the ugly environment of predatory lending facing our poorest citizens.

The resultant poverty trap is that of unmanageable debt, which is especially bad and tragic in its consequences for those on low incomes. High interest debt compounded by excessive charges rapidly becomes unmanageable, with unsustainable repayments causing stress amongst family members, limiting funds needed to purchase food and other essentials, and diminishing any remaining assets the family may have. It also negatively affects the wellbeing of the wider community, darkens the public perception of debt and contradicts the norms of social justice that we in New Zealand hold dear.

However, amongst the bad and ugly, there is good news! Ethical lenders such as ourselves at Ngā Tangata (with capital from Kiwibank and in partnership with local budgeting services to support clients with financial capability) are redressing the villainy of debt, creating an enabling tool to lift people out of poverty. Paying off their high interest debt and replacing it with a loan to NTM can at times release $20, $50, $70 or even more back into the family budget each week, providing money for essential food or necessities previously forsaken.  A fundamental aspect of our kaupapa is to facilitate clients successfully paying off their loans and being supported in the long term towards financial independence.

More good to report is that the Commerce Commission is taking increasing legal action against predatory lenders since the amendments to the Credit Contracts and Consumer Finance Act and the introduction of the Responsible Lending Code in 2015. In 2016 the Commission obtained fines against six mobile truck traders in excess of $500,000 and recently an online loan company was recently required to refund  $1.4 million in unreasonable fees to borrowers.

Our current lack of consumer protection against the ugliness of usury, predatory lending and the unmanageable debt it spawns, undermines the economy, and creates financial stress and hardship. Clearly these are bad outcomes for those already on a low income. While organisations like Ngā Tangata and other responsible lenders are endeavouring to make a difference, surely the greatest good in the interests of all, would be a financial system that is sound, ethical and socially responsible.

Access to credit – a fundamental human right. Powerful.

Saffron of Afghanistan

Meet the spice that could spark a social enterprise.

In recent years, saffron has been introduced as a healthy alternative to opium in Afghanistan, and its processing has created jobs for women in the country. Afghanistan-born Tariq Habibyar wants to capitalise on this, and create a factory that will process saffron and sell it, fair trade – thus providing jobs for local women and the disadvantaged in Afghanistan. But to get there, he needs your help – and so we had a chat to him about why you should be pledging.

Why do you think this campaign is important?

  • This is an opportunity to seed fund a project that commits to expand, pay forward, and make an impact in the lives of many who deserve to live better lives.
  • Personally, this project is close to my heart and seeing this successful will give me a sense of satisfaction and I hope it will do the same to my customers as it is intended to do so.
  • It will introduce a positive image of Afghanistan to every home of my new home New Zealand.

What motivated you to reach out to your crowd?

I love the ‘give and receive’ relationship with fellow human beings. I try to undertake any project that connects me to people for a social cause and adds value. The fact that a friend, colleague, or an individual I don’t know invest their time, energy, and money to communicate with me through this, means a world to me. It makes me happy to see we care about each other and about good causes.

What do you have planned for the rest of your campaign?

I will try to complete the ‘booklet’ for recipes as soon as I can to share with my crowd.

Anything you’d like to shout out to your crowd?

Thanks a lot for your contribution to this project. I’d be grateful if you shared this link with your friends and families.

To support Tariq’s project, check out his campaign page now.

Help us crowdsource a list of social enterprises in NZ

We’re making a list. We’re checking it more than twice (on an ongoing and a controlled-by the-crowd basis in fact). The impact we’re aiming for? Visibility for all of the kiwi social enterprises improving New Zealand and the world. And you can add to it here: pldg.me/thesocentlist

Why?

When the Social Enterprise World Forum comes to Christchurch in September, it’ll mark a major milestone for the social enterprise movement here in New Zealand. We think it’s awesome for the industry, but it’s got us thinking. Relying on a big one off global event like that to create massive (but temporary) exposure for Kiwi-grown organisations who care isn’t enough. We need to do more. Social enterprise is about many small steps from many people to collectively solve our big challenges. It’s not just about one-off events, but about every day actions.

Spreading the impact of social enterprises in New Zealand begins with visibility. Those of us that want a better future for New Zealand have the power to support others that dream of a better future – our social entrepreneurs. If we know about the socially-driven alternatives, we can choose to support them. What’s the most important way we can support? By buying their products and using their services. And then, by sharing their stories.

This isn’t the first time that someone has tried to gather a list, and we know it won’t be the last. Past efforts have fallen flat because arguments crop up over what a social enterprise is or because the sole owner of the list runs out of steam. So for the greater good of getting shit done, we’re crowdsourcing a list from folk that know best – people in the space. And, we’re doing it through Google Spreadsheets so anyone can add, edit, and improve the list. We’re also casting the net wide in terms of definition:

any organisation with a focus on positive social or environmental impact, that has a revenue stream that aims to sustain their work.

They might already see themselves as a social enterprise, or they might not. Here’s some of the social enterprises that we know and love:

  • Thought-Wired are a technology company that aims to give a voice to the voiceless. Dmitry and his team have developed nousTM – software that enables people with severe disabilities to communicate by using their brainpower!

  • Make Give Live bring together communities through local knitting groups to create beanies and connect through that shared effort. For every beanie that Make Give Live sells, they give a beanie to a homeless or elderly person in need of warmth.

  • Pomegranate Kitchen are a not-for-profit who provide group catering and individual lunch delivery in Wellington. They provide work, training and a sense of belonging to all of their cooks who come from refugee backgrounds.

  • Ethique prevent plastic packaging from going to landfill and polluting our environment, by making solid beauty bars made from biodegradable ingredients wrapped in compostable packaging.

We believe social enterprise isn’t about succeeding at the expense of others. There’s a spirit of collaboration and collective movement. It’s not about a few powerful controllers or poster children. It’s about shared success. If we solve the problems we see, we all win. So, please help us crowdsource a list of all of the social enterprises in Aotearoa, so that we all can be a part of a better, more socially and environmentally focussed, future.

Check out the list here. Add the names of the social enterprises you want to shine a light on and have a glance through at those that you can start actively supporting. And shoulder tap people in the know for more names or ideas. Kia ora!