Did you know that the Philippines has created approximately 30,000 social enterprises since 2007?
According to the British Council report A Review of Social Enterprise Activity in the Philippines, the country has a strong entrepreneurial culture, with one million Medium and Small Enterprises, which account for 99% of all businesses in the country.
With the changing business landscape of the country, the Philippines has shown great potential for emerging social enterprise initiatives.
In this piece, I would like to highlight 8 social enterprises in the Philippines that successfully scaled their reach and impacted thousands of Filipinos for social good.
Virtualahan is a virtual school for people with disabilities founded in 2015, this social enterprise has developed a cost-effective and transferable social technology that allows socially excluded populations to access work in the global digital economy.
This social enterprise in the Philippines champions inclusion for people with disabilities. Their mission is to give their beneficiaries equal opportunities to cope with the high level of work in the new digital economy. They have developed an impact model that integrates the over-all learning needs of their target beneficiaries.
They do this by providing their beneficiaries with digital skills that are practical and essential through courses like data analysis and emotional intelligence that run for four weeks. After that, they expose them to a two-week on-the-job training through their internship partners.
Moreover, their beneficiaries also receive three layers of employment support and job coaching for three months, and because of this their success rate of employment is as high as 78%.
To make their learning model more holistic, they encourage them to take leadership roles and participate in advocacy initiatives, speak at various events, and start their own businesses.
Virtualahan hopes to produce graduates that are highly competitive and economically independent.
Be inclusive is a social enterprise in the Philippines that is taking the lead in building the capacity of “individuals, organizations and companies in Asia to be more inclusive of Women, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender & Queer people (LGBTQ), People with Disabilities, Ethnic/Racial minorities and other groups traditionally marginalized in employment, business and day-to-day life.”
They do this by working with “partners to co-create workplace resources, toolkits, training, events, and other initiatives that specifically promote inclusion.”
Their creative process is based on research and design thinking approach.
Edukasyon.ph is a social enterprise in the Philippines founded in 2015. It is the largest online youth platform in the country. They cater to Filipino students aged 13 to 23 helping them become self-aware in making smart education decisions to guide them in a path towards a fulfilling career and a better life.
They do this by providing students with a free platform (website) that contains different courses, schools, scholarship opportunities, online education and other resources that will “enable them to find and take the paths best suited to their own interests, skills, and priorities.”
ANTHILL (Alternative Nest and Trading/Training Hub for Indigenous Little Livelihood) is a social enterprise in the Philippines that promotes Filipino culture through contemporary and circular design.
They support the cultural preservation and sustainable livelihood by creating a community enterprise among their partner artisan communities.
“ANTHILL works on a human and community-centered business model that ensures a sustainable and inclusive supply chain. We recognize the valuable roles of our stakeholders in keeping our local weaving industry alive.”
Roots Collective is a social enterprise in the Philippines where entrepreneurs work together to develop enterprises and communities by providing market access, capacity-building, and funding opportunities.
Their primary business is through creative distribution by promoting local products designed for mindful lifestyles.
Coffee for Peace is a social enterprise in the Philippines located in Davao city southern island of the country, this social enterprise was founded to help facilitate an informal conflict mediation between migrant and Bangsamoro farming communities. These two groups were involved in armed conflict because of land and crop ownership disputes. Coffee for Peace was a way for the founders to help mediate this by inviting the two groups to start a proper dialogue over coffee.
Coffee for Peace produces arabica coffee as their “iconic product for peace and reconciliation”. They have been training farmers on arabica production and not just in Mindanao but also in the Cordillera Region.
This social enterprise has been advocating principles of “Fair Trade in the coffee industry for the past years to advance social justice and peace.”
Good Food Co. is a social enterprise in the Philippines that promotes an alternative food system based on ethical and ecological farming.
“Good Food Community aims to “change the world with food”. All fees from subscriptions and pledges are used to support local farmers and sustain operations, while also providing consumers the opportunity to visit the farms where the food is grown, learn about farmers’ stories, and gain a newfound respect and awareness of food and the community around them.
Happy Helper offers cleaning and housekeeping services around Metro Manila. They employ women, who they call the Happy Helper, from underprivileged communities and provide them with life coaching and skills training.
“We strive to extend H.E.L.P. to all our Happy Helper nanays – (H)onor and dignity to each individual, opportunity to (E)arn additional income, a (L)oving and nurturing community, and (P)ersonal growth.”
If you want to know more about Social Enterprises in the Philippines:
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 (n.d.). ANTHILL Fabric Gallery. https://anthillfabricgallery.com/
 Coffee For Peace (CFP). (n.d.). Retrieved August 06, 2020, from https://www.choosesocial.ph/organization/coffee-for-peace-cfp
 Good Food Co. (n.d.). Retrieved August 06, 2020, from https://www.choosesocial.ph/organization/good-food-co
Find Ashoka Fellows. (n.d.). Retrieved August 04, 2020, from https://www.ashoka.org/en/our-network/ashoka-fellows/search?search_term=
About. (2020, January 19). Virtualahan. https://www.virtualahan.com/about/
Who we are. (n.d.). Roots Collective PH. https://rootscollective.ph/pages/about
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