ISEA, Oxfam, Oikocredit and ASoG Successfully Launch Social Enterprises and the Poor: Transforming Wealth

The popular version of ISEA President Marie Lisa M. Dacanay’s Ph.D. thesis Social Enterprises and the Poor: Transforming Wealth was successfully launched last October 10, 2013 at the Ground Floor of Faber Hall, Ateneo de Manila University, Quezon City. The event was participated by  stakeholders  from the social enterprise sector, civil society, government, business and academe led by Congressional Representative and Social Enterprise Bill Champion Teddy Baguilat, Ateneo School of Government (ASoG) Dean and ISEA Chair Antonio La Vina, Oxfam GB Regional Manager Amit Vatsyayan,  Gandang Kalikasan President Anna Meloto-Wilk and Deputy Regional Director for Oikocredit Emma Lim-Sandrino.  ISEA, Oxfam, Oikocredit and ASoG co-published the book.  Representatives from the cases  featured in the book from Alter Trade Foundation Inc, the Negros Organic and Fair Trade Association, Upland Marketing Foundation Inc, the National Federation of Cooperatives of Persons with Disability  and the Foundation for These Abled Inc likewise joined the celebration.

The program hosted by the Philippine Educational Theater Association’s Executive Director and ISEA member, Beng Cabangon, was graced by significant actors in the social enterprise sector.

Ateneo School of Government Dean and ISEA Chair Tony La Viňa situates the importance of the book amidst the disjoint between the reported economic growth and worsening poverty conditions in the Philippines.

Dr. Marie Lisa M. Dacanay discusses social enterprises as a strategic tool for poverty reduction through engaging the poor as primary stakeholders.

Negros Organic and Fair Trade Association (NOFTA) Secretary General Angelito Estama and Trustee of Alter Trade Foundation, Inc. Earl Parreňo provided a testimony as to how one of the successful case studies in the book, Alter Trade Group was able to organize assetless and powerless sugar workers turned Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries (ARBs) in Negros Occidental to become not only effective supplier communities.  Mr. Estama related their journey towards becoming  empowered leaders and members of associations and cooperatives that worked with Alter Trade to move a majority of them out of poverty.

Engr. Reynaldo Merida, General Manager of National Federation of Cooperatives of Persons with Disability describes the impact of their programs to their member cooperatives composed of persons with disabilities.

Anna-Meloto Wilk, President and Co-Founder of Gandang Kalikasan, Inc. candidly speaks of how the research based inputs from Dr. Dacanay’s book can serve as guideposts for social enterprise practitioners like her.

Emma Lim-Sandrino, Deputy Regional Director of Oikocredit Southeast Asia delivers a message explaining the value of the book to social investors and social enterprise support institutions.

Guest of honor Congressman Teddy Baguilat, a champion of the Poverty Reduction through Social Entrepreneurship  (PRESENT) Bill in the Lower House, shared  the importance of the book in providing  valuable insights to legislators such as himself in efforts to pass the Bill in Congress.

Amit Vatsyayan Regional Manager of the Economic Empowerment Programme of Oxfam GB affirmed Oxfam’s commitment to social enterprises as vehicles for women economic leadership and poverty reduction. He highlighted  the partnership between ISEA and Oxfam in research and platform building initiatives to promote the role of social enterprises in transformational partnerships to move the poor out of poverty and to develop  an ecosystem conducive to the  growth and scaling up of  social enterprises.  ISEA and Oxfam have an ongoing research on the role, potentials and challenges of social enterprises as key players in poverty reduction and women economic empowerment  covering 4 countries in Asia.

The book features six social enterprise case studies and the different ways they engage the poor as stakeholders.  Three models of stakeholder engagement are illustrated through six case studies, showing that it is when social enterprises have transformational partnerships with the poor that they succeed in assisting their progress out of poverty. It is currently being sold at ISEA, 2F Pacifico Ortiz Hall, Ateneo School of Government, Ateneo de Manila University, Loyola Heights, Quezon City. Kindly contact for orders.