Collective energy for global good at world forum

The Social Enterprise World Forum attended by 21 NSW social entrepreneurs brought fresh ideas to this growing business sector, writes Brendan Berecry.

Portrait of man smiling Portrait of man smiling
Image: Social entrepreneur Ravi Prasad . . . enthusiasm boost from world forum

The 2022 Social Enterprise World Forum, a global event hosted by Australia, offered social entrepreneurs a unique opportunity to learn about social enterprises – which strive for a fairer and more sustainable world – from an international perspective.

A $50,000 bursary program from the NSW Government’s Youth Employment Stimulus budget funded the highly motivated young people to attend the forum in Brisbane on September 28-29 to grow their social enterprises.

Over two days of workshops and forums, they had the chance to network and exchange ideas with their global peers to further transform their local businesses.

Ravi Prasad, recipient of the NSW Human Rights Medal 2022 founded Parliament on King at 632 King Street, Newtown, as a community hub café and bookstore employing and training refugees and asylum seekers and aiding their transition into Australian society.

“SEWF 2022 was a revelation. It’s clear that there are real answers to some of the world’s more difficult challenges, and the people to make it happen,” he said.

“To have so many gathered in the one place was inspiring. You could feel the collective energy, powering all the good causes locally and globally and making change happen.

“I have returned with my energy and enthusiasm renewed, and new ideas to increase the power and impact of our work.”

The forum comes as social enterprises are increasingly having an impact on the economic, environmental and social wellbeing of NSW, with their focus on producing the widest possible community benefit.

Following a competitive nomination process, each of the 21 selected bursary recipients from NSW received $2,000 towards attending the forum.

The Social Enterprise World Forum was first held in Edinburgh, Scotland, in 2008 to provide an opportunity for social enterprise leaders and practitioners from around the world to network and exchange ideas.

The program of activities inspired by the forum has been expanded to work throughout the year to support the growing global social enterprise movement, including through policy and social procurement work.

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