SEBI Trains Policy Makers and Industry Leaders in Social Enterprise

    JN Group

    Robin Levy (centre), Deputy General Manager of the Jamaica Stock Exchange and Claudette Anglin (left), Programme Management Specialist at the United States Agency for International Development are facinated with the work of art done by Alpha Wear JA, one of the companies being supported by the Social Enterprise Boost Initiative (SEBI). The occasion was a workshop on Social Enterprise 101 organized by SEBI for business enablers and industry stakeholders and policy makers. The two day workshop took place June 7-8 at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel.

    Some 50 business leaders, industry stakeholders and policy makers were trained in Social Enterprise 101 at a two-day Social Enterprise Boost Initiative (SEBI) workshop, a programme being implemented by the JN Foundation.

    The participants were drawn from , government agencies, ministries and Department of Cooperatives & Friendly Societies through partnership with SEBI, the World Bank and the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture & Fisheries.

    Saffrey Brown, general manager of the JN Foundation, which spearheads SEBI, said that social enterprise was an excellent tool, which can propel community development.

    “We have all experienced good projects that have not survived, because it takes dedicated resources to sustain growth; and the social enterprise model can achieve this,” she said, in addressing the opening session of the workshop, on June 7 at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel, in New Kingston.

    Vivian Brown, Director of the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture & Fisheries, welcomed the training; and pointed out that in recent years social enterprise has been a journey of discovering.

    “Social Enterprises are becoming critical agents for development by using solid business models. The model has shown particular strength in addressing issues relating to crime; and the marginalised, such as persons with disabilities; as well as addressing environmental and climate change issues,” he said.

    “My ministry recognises that social enterprises creates local value; and can play a central role in the creation of jobs,” he added.

    Elaine Tinsley, private sector specialist at the World Bank, who facilitated the training said the World Bank was pleased to be involved; and noted that, “If the social enterprise sector grows, it would make significant impact on the Jamaican economy.”

    The participants were trained to address development challenges; how social enterprises can employ marginalised groups in the society; incubating the Jamaican social enterprise ecosystem; and global lessons from countries with conducive ecosystems.

    Since its inception in 2012, SEBI has trained managers and employees in social enterprises  to achieve efficiency and growth, by improving their management and marketing skills. Some enterprises have enhanced their operations, generating in excess of $37 million in revenue; creating more than 15 new market-ready products and services; as well as, employing more than 100 community members.

    SEBI, is an initiative of the JN Foundation and the United States Agency for International Development.