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100 Micro Social Innovations

From Finance to Toolkits, Small-Sized Examples of Entrepreneurship

— June 29, 2013 — Social Good
These micro social innovations show just what can be done on a small scale. While perhaps this story begins with microfinance, a loan and credit program that is often associated with Muhammad Yunus' Grameen Bank, this SocialBusiness.org top list doesn't simply include those related to microfinance. For instance, Stockbox Neighborhood Grocery, which is based in Seattle, Washington is a "small-format" grocery store. As such, they offer produce to communities located in food deserts.

From finance to toolkits, these micro social innovations offer up small-sized examples of entrepreneurship, making us rethink "think big" while at the same time creating something larger altogether if you do think of social enterprise as movement. And with programs like the Awesome Foundation, it seems that the web is allowing smallness to come forth in mass numbers.
4.7
Score
Popularity
Activity
Freshness
100
Acupuncture Cooperatives
Acupuncture Cooperatives
POCA Aims to Provide Affordable and High Quality Treatment
<
99
Rule-Breaking Market Ventures
Rule-Breaking Market Ventures
The Criterion Institute Attempts to Shift Energies
<
98
Tech-Focused Continent Narratives
Tech-Focused Continent Narratives
The Microsoft 4Afrika Initiative Promotes Entrepreneurship
<
97
Community-Empowering Language Lessons
Community-Empowering Language Lessons
Speak Shop Enables 1-1 Spanish Tutoring Over Skype
<
96
Self-Reliant Immediate Investments
Self-Reliant Immediate Investments
Bina Swadaya Teaches Members to Invest Using Self-Help Groups
<
95
Microcredit Sanitation Services
Microcredit Sanitation Services
The Gramalaya Urban and Rural Development Initiatives and Network
<
94
Creative Credit Programs
Creative Credit Programs
The Microfinance for Artists Research Project Focuses on Socio-Economics
<
93
Micro-Entrepreneurial Management
Micro-Entrepreneurial Management
Hapinoy Uses a Multi-Level Program to Teach and Share Knowledge
<
92
Creative Power Forums
Creative Power Forums
The Social Business Conference 2012 Featured Muhammad Yunus
<
91
Health Care Smart Cards
Health Care Smart Cards
Changamka Microhealth Ltd is an Outpatient Company in Kenya
<
90
Business-Building Education Programs
Business-Building Education Programs
The Global Social Benefit Incubator at Santa Clara University
<
89
Micro-Health Insurance
Micro-Health Insurance
Naya Jeevan Makes Healthcare a Reality for Low Income Employees
<
88
American-Based Microlending
American-Based Microlending
ACCION Chicago Provides Financial Access to Small Business Owners
<
87
Socially Responsible Smartphone Donations
Socially Responsible Smartphone Donations
The 'Oven Bits Instead' App Promotes Giving to Charity
<
86
World Bank Books
World Bank Books
'The New Microfinance Handbook: A Financial Market System Perspective'
<
85
Mission-Focused Mentorship
Mission-Focused Mentorship
Global Social Benefit Incubator Launched Kiva, VisionSpring
<
84
Multivitamins for Purpose
Multivitamins for Purpose
A Bottle of Vitamma Gives 2 Years of Nutrition to 3 Kids
<
83
Social Street Papers
Social Street Papers
Real Issues Magazine Empowers Communities Marginalized by Poverty
<
82
Youth Innovation Mentorships
Youth Innovation Mentorships
Startup Corps Engages Students in Social Enterprise in Philadelphia
<
81
Cloud-Based Education Toolkits
Cloud-Based Education Toolkits
Zaya is a Non-Profit Whose Founder is an Echoing Green Fellow
<
80
Ads That Nourish Kids
Ads That Nourish Kids
Lazy Angel Browser Add-On Easily Fights Malnutrition in Children
<
79
Technological Literacy Programs
Technological Literacy Programs
‘121 Women and Computers' Teaches Valuable Employment
<
78
Business Development-Focused Cuisine
Business Development-Focused Cuisine
Exceline Catering's Founders Commit to Small Enterprise Ideas
<
77
Cashless Microfinance
Cashless Microfinance
Musoni Delivers Banking Services by Way of Cellphones
<
76
Guarantor Model Capital
Guarantor Model Capital
MicroCredit Enterprises Uses the Funds of People with a High Net Worth
<
75
POS Social Enterprises
POS Social Enterprises
Frogtek Uses Cellphones to Bring Tools to Small-Scale Retailers
<
74
Alternative Banking Loans
Alternative Banking Loans
The Hilltop Microfinance Initiative Helps in Low-Income Entrepreneurs
<
73
Micro-Lending Web Platforms
Micro-Lending Web Platforms
Lendwithcare.org Works with The Co-operative
<
72
Charitable Dining Recommendations
Charitable Dining Recommendations
Tasting Table Provides Funding To Help Budding Entrepreneurs
<
71
Micro-Entrepreneurial Kits
Micro-Entrepreneurial Kits
Living Goods Provides Affordable Necessities in Uganda
<
70
Imaginative Care Supporters
Imaginative Care Supporters
Community Catalysts Develops Radical Solutions to Social Issues
<
69
Urban Housing Banks
Urban Housing Banks
Jamii Bora is a Microfinance Institution Based in Nairobi, Kenya
<
68
Microfinancing Poverty Solutions
Microfinancing Poverty Solutions
Lumana Credit is Microlending to Rural Africans from Seattle
<
67
Four-in-One Social Entrepreneurship Opportunities
Four-in-One Social Entrepreneurship Opportunities
Ontario Catapult Microloan Fund is Streamlined
<
66
Research-Funding Web Platforms
Research-Funding Web Platforms
Microryza Crowdfunds Innovative Science Research Projects
<
65
Green Coal Options
Green Coal Options
Eco-Fuel Africa Works on Creating Sustainable Energy Technologies
<
64
Low-Income Microfinance Associations
Low-Income Microfinance Associations
RADIM Works in Buenos Aires to Support Economic Development
<
63
Micro Forestry Startups
Micro Forestry Startups
KOMAZA Creates Sustainable Economic Opportunities for Farmers in Africa
<
62
Supply Chain Integrating Loans
Supply Chain Integrating Loans
Kinara Capital is a Social Enterprise Supporting Startups in India
<
61
NGO-Turned-for-Profit Companies
NGO-Turned-for-Profit Companies
SKS Microfinance is a Loan-Providing Company Based in India
<
60
Eco-Conscious Knitted Attire
Eco-Conscious Knitted Attire
'lur.' Creates Comfortable Clothing for the Environmentally Aware
<
59
Disruptive Entrepreneur Incubators
Disruptive Entrepreneur Incubators
The Unreasonable Institute Spurs Social Enterprise Ventures
<
58
Micro-Volunteering
Micro-Volunteering
The Extraordinaries is a Platform for Small-Scale Time Commitments
<
57
Global Microfinance Networks
Global Microfinance Networks
FINCA Provides Financial Services to Low-Income Entrepreneurs
<
56
Innovative Eye Care
Innovative Eye Care
VisionSpring is a Social Enterprise Selling Eyeglasses to Developing Countries
<
55
Eco-Certified Athletic Balls
Eco-Certified Athletic Balls
Fair Trade Sports is a North American Purpose-Driven Company
<
54
Collateral-Free Microcredit
Collateral-Free Microcredit
Muhammad Yunus's Grameen Bank Has Revolutionized Finance
<
53
Organic Food Fighters
Organic Food Fighters
Stonyfield Farms' 'Be a Food Superhero' Campaign Advises Healthy Eating
<
52
One-for-One Multivitamins
One-for-One Multivitamins
Life Equals is Partnered with Vitamin Angels to Fight Undernutrition
<
51
Manifesto-Driven Fashion
Manifesto-Driven Fashion
Holstee Wants Customers to Consider People, Planet, Product
<
50
No-Strings-Attached Grants
No-Strings-Attached Grants
Awesome Foundation Gives Out Monthly Micro-Monetary Support
<
49
Hunger-Eliminating Social Media
Hunger-Eliminating Social Media
FlashFood Turns Restaurant Leftovers into Meals for the Hungry
<
48
Crafty Microfinance Blogs
Crafty Microfinance Blogs
Ahkun Takes a Different Approach with Local Artisans
<
47
Alternative Micro-Investment Platforms
Alternative Micro-Investment Platforms
InVenture Helps Entrepreneurs in Developing Countries
<
46
Gender-Based Violence Support
Gender-Based Violence Support
SHE WILL is a Project of the Acclaimed Global Enrichment Foundation
<
45
Innovative Micro-Crowdfunding Sites
Innovative Micro-Crowdfunding Sites
The Tipping Bucket is a Web Platform for Social Change
<
44
Green Power Microlending
Green Power Microlending
Energy in Common's Person-to-Person Loans Fight Climate Change
<
43
Social Advisory Firms
Social Advisory Firms
Intellecap is a ‘Think and Do' Tank With Market-Based Strategies
<
42
Social Entrepreneurship Filmmakers
Social Entrepreneurship Filmmakers
Actuality Media Create Philanthropic Videos About Changemakers
<
41
Indian Water-Saving Technology
Indian Water-Saving Technology
GEWP Allows Farmers to Yield More Crops and Create More Jobs
<
40
Global Charity Microfinancers
Global Charity Microfinancers
WildHearts Provides Microloans to Help People Work out of Poverty
<
39
Poverty-Fighting Soap
Poverty-Fighting Soap
'Eve Echo' Sells Hygiene Products That Offer Loans to Female Entrepreneurs
<
38
Social Enterprise Magazines
Social Enterprise Magazines
Beyond Profit Provides Content to Spark Positive Change
<
37
One-for-One Prenatal Vitamins
One-for-One Prenatal Vitamins
Build Nutrition Tackles Malnutrition in the Majority World
<
36
1 for 1 Snacks
1 for 1 Snacks
Each KUTOA Health Bar Also Buys a Nutrient Pack for a Child in Need
<
35
Closed Loop Plant Systems
Closed Loop Plant Systems
Aquaponics UK is a Social Enterprise Tackling Waste, Food and Energy
<
34
Emissions-Free Delivery
Emissions-Free Delivery
GnewtCargo is a Logistics Organization Using an Electric Fleet of Vehicles
<
33
Explosive Suit Accessories
Explosive Suit Accessories
These 'PeaceBOMB' Cufflinks Will Blow You Away
<
32
Urban Slum Sanitation
Urban Slum Sanitation
Sanergy Turns Kenyan Toilets into Green Social Enterprises
<
31
Micro-Volunteering Platforms
Micro-Volunteering Platforms
Raise5 Enables the Charitable Giving of Your Time and Talents
<
30
Microloans for Homelessness?
Microloans for Homelessness?
Beyond the Cardboard Shares Stories, Interviews and Resources
<
29
Youth-Oriented Finances
Youth-Oriented Finances
MyBnk Teaches Money Management and Entrepreneurial Skills
<
28
Inclusive Economic Development
Inclusive Economic Development
Aavishkaar Invests in Rural Communities Through Entrepreneurs
<
27
Online Marketplaces for Good
Online Marketplaces for Good
KarmaGoat is Like Craigslist But Proceeds Go to Charity
<
26
Energy-Generating Fitness Clubs
Energy-Generating Fitness Clubs
The Green Microgym in Portland, OR is Powered by Your Workout
<
25
Ceramic Water Filters
Ceramic Water Filters
Pure Home Water Creates Low-Tech Solution to Water Sanitation
<
24
Activist Apparel + Accessories
Activist Apparel + Accessories
Nest Helps Fund Female Artisans in Developing Countries
<
23
Philanthropic Online Platforms
Philanthropic Online Platforms
UNITE is Working to Enable Impactful Connections Throughout Africa
<
22
Giving 2.0
Giving 2.0
Kiva Loans Lend Directly to a Developing World Entrepreneur
<
21
Culture-Sustaining Hammocks
Culture-Sustaining Hammocks
Yellow Leaf Provides Alternatives to Child Labor and Toxic Farming
<
20
Ecotourism Development Cooperatives
Ecotourism Development Cooperatives
Travel for Change Melds Community-Based Initiatives and Tours
<
19
Fair Trade Cocoa
Fair Trade Cocoa
Divine Chocolate is a Social Business Partly Owned by Its Farmers
<
18
Empowered Hand-Crafted Accessories
Empowered Hand-Crafted Accessories
BADALA Gives Single East African Mothers a Working Income
<
17
Fair Trade Statement Jewelry
Fair Trade Statement Jewelry
Raven + Lily Features Collections Benefiting HIV-Positive Women
<
16
Microlending Credit Cards
Microlending Credit Cards
KivaB4B Doubles Grants
<
15
Conscious Capitalism
Conscious Capitalism
Dirty Business No More
<
14
Recycled Map Wallets
Recycled Map Wallets
Mighty Wallet Takes Intricate Recycled Paper & Makes 100% Biodegradable Goods
<
13
Ebay Ventures Into Microfinance
Ebay Ventures Into Microfinance
MicroPlace.com
<
12
Energy Poverty Entrepreneurs
Energy Poverty Entrepreneurs
Solar Sister Targets Women to Sell Lamps and Improve Livelihoods
<
11
Small-Format Food Shopping
Small-Format Food Shopping
Stockbox Neighborhood Grocery Attempts to Provide Access
<
10
Adventures with Purpose
Adventures with Purpose
Sam Bruce Shares 10 Ethical Holiday Providers of Sustainable Tourism
<
9
Microfinance Investing
Microfinance Investing
Kiva.org Lets You Become a Banker to the Poor
<
8
$20-Per-Month Homes
$20-Per-Month Homes
Each WorldHaus is Built in 10 Days and is Designed for the World's Rural Poor
<
7
Micro Loan Bikinis
Micro Loan Bikinis
RubyMoon Swimwear Donates its Profits to Female Entrepreneurs
<
6
Social Entrepreneurs
Social Entrepreneurs
A Megatrend
<
5
Accessible Bamboo Bicycles
Accessible Bamboo Bicycles
Zambikes International Creates Jobs and Transportation in Zambia
<
4
Microloan-Giving Tees
Microloan-Giving Tees
The Naked Hippie Invests in Small-Scale Entrepreneurs in the Majority World
<
3
Pay-as-You-Go Energy
Pay-as-You-Go Energy
Simpa Networks Offers Solar Power to Underserved Markets in India
<
2
DIY Battery Manufacturing Kits
DIY Battery Manufacturing Kits
The Solar Pocket Factory is Tiny Idea That Shines Bright
<
1
Explosive Ethical Jewelry
Explosive Ethical Jewelry
'peaceBOMB' Bracelets Embrace War-Inflicted Cities
<