Local communities may have a wide range of social and environmental challenges. The Foundation supports innovative and scalable solutions to complex social and environmental challenges to further build resilience within local communities.
In response to community interest in collaborating to develop innovative solutions to community challenges, the Foundation is supporting the Inventa Communidad program in Tierra Amarilla and Caldera. The Inventa program is a unique initiative which empowers members of local communities to identify and implement solutions to pressing social and environmental challenges. The Foundation has partnered with Chrysalis, a entrepreneurship and business incubator of the Universidad de Valparaiso de Chile to deliver and fund the launch phase of the solutions. Company volunteers will be closely involved in the process, enabling greater collaboration and knowledge sharing. CORFO, the regional economic development agency will provide additional support for longer term implementation.
DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO
PSI ZINC INITIATIVE
Zinc is an essential micro-nutrient required by all living things. Zinc deficiency has a particularly detrimental impact on our health, limiting our ability to prevent and fight disease and infections. In the DRC, the World Health Organisation estimates that 57% of children are at risk of zinc deficiency and over 150,000 children die each year of pneumonia and diarrhea. The Foundation has partnered with PSI and the International Zinc Association to strengthen capacity of local health workers to promote the use of Oral Rehydration Salts (ORS) and Zinc tablets in the prevention and treatment of diarrhea, build local production capacity of ORS/zinc supplements and increase crop yields and zinc uptake through zinc fertilizers and sprays.
boost refugee program
The Syrian conflict has become a critical issue across Europe as hundreds of thousands of people flee the conflict. Norway received close to 30,000 refugee applications in 2015, stretching the capacity of local agencies to handle the demand. The Foundation has partnered with SoCentral, the leading Norwegian social innovation hub to launch BOOST REFUGEE targeted at supporting social enterprises offering employment and integration support to refugees. Since launching in September 2016, BOOST received 32 applications and will be supporting five initiatives with in-depth business mentoring. The target impact is to accelerate the rate of employment for refugrees and to develop new delivery model for integration support to newcomers.
In 2015, Sweden took in over 160,000 refugees, the majority of whom are fleeing the Syrian conflict. This influx inevitably strainsg existing services and creating challenges for smooth integration. On average, it takes those granted asylum 7 years to gain employment, which negatively impacts their ability to joinSwedish society. The Foundation has partnered with Impact Invest Scandinavia to launch C/O Business, a business incubator targeted at supporting refugees who were entrepreneurs in their home country and have entrepreneurial ambitions to re-start another enterprise in Sweden. C/O Business was launched in September 2016 in Lund, and received over 60 applications. Fifteen businesses have been selected and have already completed the first round of business training with support from Innovation Skåne, the regional innovation agency. The target impact of C/O Business is to support the launch and growth of the new enterprises as a means to support integration and create employment opportunities for others within the refugee community.