Women’s Economic Empowerment and Social Enterprise Regional Visioning and Engagement Asia (WEE SERVE Asia)

The Women’s Economic Empowerment and Social Enterprise Regional Visioning and Engagement in Asia or WEE-SERVE Asia seeks to build a multi-stakeholder platform in order to promote agricultural value chain (AVC) interventions and investments in Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) that would transform and empower women and men small scale producers as a contribution to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 

The practice and advocacy of transformational partnerships in AVCs are expected to directly impact relevant SDGs namely: reduced inequality and women’s empowerment, decent jobs and inclusive growth, zero poverty and hunger and sustainable production, consumption and communities. 

As part of this initiative, a four-day conference was conducted last April 19-22, 2017 at Asian Institute of Management (AIM) Conference Center, Makati City. This is the first WEE-SERVE Asia Conference that was attended by more than fifty (50) representatives of social enterprises/ social enterprise networks, resource and support institutions of social enterprises, civil society organizations, inclusive businesses and companies practicing CSR in the agricultural, government agencies and policy makers, multilateral agencies, social impact investors, and academe. With the theme, “Promoting Transformational Partnerships and Women’s Empowerment in Agricultural Value Chains in ASEAN,” the conference showcased social enterprise models that have had significant impact on the lives of the men and women small scale producers. These models were involved in the two-year action research from the countries of Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Philippines. It also validated and enriched the benchmarks for transformational partnerships derived from the cases. It also, to a certain extent, initiated dialogue with ASEAN agencies and member governments, as well as multilateral agencies operating in ASEAN, the business community, and social impact investors about the various social enterprise models present and of the benchmarks.