Social Entrepreneurship – Enactus at Berkeley
Enactus is a social entrepreneurship club that aims to improve the community by launching business ventures that solve relevant social issues. Our team is committed to making a difference, thus we have launched 3 projects that we know will make an impact. Please make a gift today to help us launch the following initiatives:
1) Wheely's Cafe:
When Enactus at Cal was still just a dream in the makings, Wheely’s Cafe, an international bicycle coffee cart chain, donated an older model of their cart to our club for use in one of our future projects.After noticing the high rates of homelessness both in our community of Berkeley and around the Bay Area, we decided to use the cart as a transitional job opportunity for those struggling to find employment. This opportunity will allow people in transition to gain experience and build resumes before finding more permanent and sustainable jobs.
The Enactus students spent the fall semester devising this plan and formulating a business proposal, then at the beginning of this year found a transitional home to partner with and implement the business. We intend to sell coffee and pastries from local cafes, thereby performing a marketing service and an additional source of revenue.
2) Project Produce:
Food scarcity is a huge issue both in the Bay Area and among University of California students statewide. 48% of University of California undergraduates are food insecure and 39% of UC Berkeley students are food insecure. In the fall of 2016, Cal Enactus members noticed that the lack of affordable, healthy food options within close proximity to campus is an issue that seriously impacts the UC Berkeley community.
While our campus has a food pantry specifically geared towards food-insecure students, the produce and healthy food selection is limited. In order to combat this issue, Enactus students have been working towards partnering with a local grocery store to sell would-be-waste produce at our school’s food pantry and on stands at our actual campus. Through research, we discovered that companies receive a large tax benefit by donating excess produce to charity. We intend to take a portion of this tax benefit in exchange for transporting the extra produce.
In order to implement this service, we plan to create a work-study job. This job will entail the transportation of the produce from our source store to the pantry, therefore elevating the income of students and increasing their ability to purchase healthy food; combating food insecurity on two levels.
3) Compostable Cups:
In February of 2017, new Enactus students noticed the extreme amounts of non-recyclable cups being used at social events held at fraternities and sororities. They thought of a way to lessen the environmental burden by replacing traditional plastic cups with compostable cups. The students working on this project are in the process of partnering with the company that provides compostable cups to our university or with a student- run startup to provide cups to the Greek houses. They are also looking into creating a dishwashing service for actually sustainable cups, and would create a business in the process.
Compostable cups have specific requirements for disposal, and as such need to be transported to a specific composting site that is not handled by the city of Berkeley. Another possibility would be to employ students to remove and transport the compostable cups from all the Greek houses to the disposal site.
Another issue these Enactus members hope to tackle is that of sexual assault on college campuses. In future years, the students working on this project hope to work with Berkeley engineers to develop a drug detection model to implement in the compostable cups.
All donations will be split evenly between the 3 projects. Rest assured though, if you have a particular project you are passionate about you are welcome to reach out to our team and share your thoughts or ideas. We encourage any outside help we can get!
Around the world, Enactus chapters are helping create a better world. At UC Berkeley, we’re instilling sustainable change to better our community. We are a social entrepreneurship organization that’s dedicated to solving social, financial, and environmental issues in the world around us by launching business ventures. We are a group of highly motivated students from diverse backgrounds that collectively build projects to solve the problems we see every day in the world around us.
Last semester, we participated in the Enactus National Competition, winning the regional round. Although we’re incredibly proud of the projects we have been able to start, we are lacking the necessary funding to give our projects the push they need. With your generous help, we will be able to ensure our projects can continue to create sustainable change.
If you'd like to learn more about our organization follow this link!