How do we overcome cultural, economic, and geographic barriers to create large-scale social change? What does the world look like without walls separating the citizen sector from any other sector? How can successful individuals from across a variety of fields channel their entrepreneurial talents and passion into creating an Everyone A Changemaker world?
Members of the Ashoka Support Network commit their expertise, creativity, and connections to answer these questions and tackle the world’s toughest problems. In recruiting for ASN, Ashoka seeks innovative leaders to work hand-in-hand with Ashoka Fellows and staff. Such leaders are ready to transcend traditional philanthropy by applying their own energy and resources, helping to open new doors for the world’s leading social entrepreneurs. Where philanthropy comes up short and start-up investors prove too risk-averse, ASN and other pioneers in social finance are filling the gap and enabling social entrepreneurs to scale up.
ASN is at the forefront of a movement redefining “value creation” beyond what’s simply reflected in a company’s bottom line, to how its mission and values affect the lives of all stakeholders. ASN members understand that money is the enabler, not the motive, for business. The story of how ASN members supported and advised Ashoka Fellow Felipe Vergara and Lumni, a pioneer in the field of human capital financing, is a testament to ASN’s capacity to intervene at an organization’s early stage and help facilitate systems change.
The 2013 ASN Global Summit in London, U.K., proved highly valuable for both ASN members and Ashoka Fellows:
“Seeing this group of business leaders, of people from around the world, that come here and start the conversation by saying, ‘Look, what I can I bring to the table to make your organization more successful,’ is just an incredible experience.” —Ashoka Fellow Sascha Haselmayer, co-founder of Citymart.com
“I had the experience of going to a primary school with [Ashoka Fellow] Mary Gordon [from] Roots of Empathy. She led the class so we saw how the kids reacted. Hearing them talk about their change in behaviors, it was really inspiring, actually. You don’t often get that at conferences—a chance to see things directly happening.” —ASN Member Jeremy Rogers
“Just listening to Fellows’ stories and understanding what they’ve come through, and sensing the passion that comes across … these are the highlights that I take away.” —ASN Member Fabienne Serfaty