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16

Apr

2015

The Carbon Game

Educating children about carbon emissions, conservation and mitigation.

Community Friends offers a school program in Asia, Africa and North America to teach children about carbon dioxide concentrations in our atmosphere and ways they can help through conservation, mitigation and education. The Carbon Game is an engaging way for students to learn more about climate change and the important task of measuring carbon emissions.

Students learn about renewable energy using
donated solar cells from Choice Solar.

How:

The game takes place in the classroom or a school’s green/eco club. It includes these steps:

1. Understanding carbon concentrations in the atmosphere using data from NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies.

2. Students count their households’ car miles, air miles, natural gas and electricity bill for one period. At the end of the period, the entire classroom’s carbon footprint is totaled in pounds of CO2.

3. Understanding the methods to lower carbon concentrations: conservation, renewable energy, and carbon mitigation. Small demonstration solar panels can be donated to classrooms.

4. Students pledge to educate 5 people outside of their household. Students can also set a goal to help mitigate the classroom’s carbon footprint through carbon offsets.

Over time as the game gathers data from classrooms around the world. This data can be shared and graphed for comparison as part of the game. Two classes from different schools in different countries can do the game together.

We educate students with
classroom presentations.

Why:

We believe that educating the next generation about CO2 concentrations, conservation and mitigation is one of the greatest impacts we can have in our work. The success of the program inspired Community Friends to partner with other educators and develop a model that is now offered internationally. More than 2,000 students have participated in our presentations in four countries.

Students use balloons to
visualize one pound of CO2

Fundraising Goal:

We are hoping to raise $15,000 to cover the costs of our program work for the 2015/2016 school year. All donations are tax deductible.

Please donate and help us reach our goal. Please share with others. Thanks!


30

Jan

2012

Alameda Elementary, Portland, Oregon, USA

 

About 30 fourth graders from Alameda Elementary School in Portland, Oregon participated in the Carbon Game over their Winter Break. Once they calculated the total carbon footprint of their households, they decided to put together their own presentation for the entire school of about 800 students. Fourth grade teacher, Christy Caton, talked about her students’ experience:

“Participating in the Carbon Game was a fun and informative way for my students to learn about carbon emissions.  The Powerpoint materials were visually interesting and generated some wonderful conversations. Tracking auto and air mileage, and looking at electricity and natural gas usage made families more aware of their own carbon footprint.  My students created their own Powerpoint and presented to the entire school during two assemblies. They presented some of our class data, and shared ideas for how they would help the environment and reduce their own carbon footprints.”

This  the second Carbon Game and the first time that a presentation was made to the entire school, inspiring us to use this format in the future. Parents and teachers attended the presentations and we had the opportunity to hear from parents about their experience at home.

Here is a collection of six parents’ comments about the Carbon Game:

“It was interesting to look at the mileage driven – to actually measure it (and Owen loved being able to go out to the cars and write down the numbers).  Before we never really thought about it because we need to drive for work.  But we try not to drive on the weekends, to ride bikes or walk instead.  Although we were already cognizant of our mileage we weren’t as aware of our power usage.  We had many revealing conversations about conservation with our boys and it definitely changed our use of power.  Although it was a bit difficult for my son to understand the significance of the measurements used, I think the Carbon Game lent itself nicely to talking with our kids.”

Cathie, mom to Owen

 “My husband pays the bills so I never really looked at our use of gas and electricity.  When I did to participate in the Carbon Game I was surprised to see we used more power than I thought.  We were always pretty good about turning lights off when not needed but after the Carbon Game my son became much more aware of the power being on.  He really tracked things and helped remind us all the time when something could be turned off.   He sort of became our “energy police.”  He even told people at church about what he had learned and been doing with the Carbon Game at school.  We have always been aware of the problems facing the earth but the Carbon Game reinforced our concern for the planet and knowledge that we have an impact.  I am grateful for the Carbon Game – for the opportunity to present kids with the information while their minds are open to the message. (ie before middle school)”  

Laurie, mom to Aaron

“It was great to see my 4th grader talking to her younger brother about the Carbon Game and what it meant for our family.  It definitely sparked conversation in our family about our habits and made my kids say “we should ride our bikes there instead of driving.”  

Rebecca, mom to Annika

“The Carbon Game was not difficult to participate in.  It is very user friendly.  My son really noticed mileage after writing down the number on the odometer.  We talked about why one car has so many miles and the other not as many, how we use our cars and where we go.  I also appreciated that kids are the teachers with the Carbon Game.  My boys (4th and 2nd grades) liked the experience and I think the Carbon Game really complements what is done at school.” 

Korinna, mom to Jackson

“We thought we were doing well and then my husband had to go on a business trip to the East Coast.  The Carbon Game made us recognize the impact of flying on carbon emissions.   It also got us thinking about how we use resources.   The Carbon Game made my daughter realize there is a real reason behind turning off the light when you leave a room besides me just nagging her.  She now knows that her actions have a real impact.”   

Kirsten, mom to Edith

“I appreciated the kid-focused approach to the topic of carbon emissions and climate change.  It was easy for my child to look at and write down the numbers from the car odometers and looking at our power and natural gas bills together to find the numbers needed was another great lesson and launch pad for discussion.  My son came to understand the importance of carbon and the role it plays in our atmosphere.  All in all this was a great experience for our entire family. “  

Michael, dad to Griffin

 


30

Sep

2011

First Carbon Game in Oregon, USA

The first Carbon Game was launched during Earth Day celebrations in April 2011 at Stafford Primary School in West Linn, Oregon, USA. 100 fourth graders in four classes took part in the 30-day program to learn about carbon concentrations in the atmosphere, climate change, and how to help through conservation and mitigation.

The most important part of the Carbon Game is the exercise and discussions at home about measuring a family’s carbon footprint. These discussions around the dinner table with parents and siblings often lead to long-term changes in energy use and inspire students to consider their future role in climate change education as they become young adults.

We would like to thank the teachers at Stafford Primary for their willingness to be the first school to try the pilot program. We would like to give a special thanks to teacher Shelly Buchanan for inviting us to Stafford. Shelly explains the significance of the Carbon Game program:

“The Carbon Game uses a hands-on, real-life teaching and learning model that speaks to both students and teachers.  Today, most kids know that we are in an energy crisis.  For them to have an opportunity to investigate this global issue from a personal and practical vantage point, one where they can investigate their own reliance upon and use of fossil fuel, is the most powerful, meaningful and memorable of all.  The Carbon Game gives kids the opportunity to see exactly how they and their family purchase and consume fossil fuel.  Likewise, students have an opportunity to study other energy resources and practice how to transition to other, more sustainable ways of consuming. At Stafford Primary School, where Carsten Henningsen first trialed the Carbon Game, fourth grade students, enjoyed the opportunity to actively investigate through individual data collection and collective analysis, just exactly how energy is consumed in their own homes and in their community.  This hands-on, minds-on experience built awareness that will stay with them for the duration.  And it is this awareness of the leaders of tomorrow we must count on to inspire and implement more sustainable changes in our energy choices of the future.  The Carbon Game is a powerful, relevant tool for helping children understand how much of our lives revolve around the consumption of energy, the many ways we can reduce this consumption, and the alternative energy sources available today and possible in the near future.”

The 100 student households measured their carbon footprints (car miles, air miles, electricity and natural gas) and the total for the 30-day period was 591,588 pounds or an average of 5,916 pounds per household.

Now with the success of this first pilot program, we have the confidence to try the Carbon Game at more schools both in the USA and internationally


18

Sep

2011

This post is the last in our six-part series with John Ainger. John spent the first months of the year as an intern with Community Friends studying micro-enterprise and ecological economics in Portland, Oregon and Sri Lanka. He is now beginning his college career at University of Sussex in England.

Jeewa a naturally early bird gets up at 5:30, and wakes me up at what I consider midnight but actually 6 o’clock. The sunrise is truly astonishing, though for the locals it is just another start to the day.

It was quite sad for me leaving the beautiful place and people of Waitalawa and Ulla behind. For me, I felt perhaps that I had not fully grasped what day-to-day life meant here during my brief stay on the island of Sri Lanka. I had merely a small snapshot. I had come away thinking however, that these people were far more sustainable than we in the West are and that they were far more ‘local’ in their economics. It is nice to see that there are still a few places where the tentacles of globalisation have not yet reached. These people do not lead a ‘Western’ lifestyle but with a little help I believe they will be the happier for it.

While Community Friends are helping them, they can also teach us. Jeewa was sad to leave as I think he feels a real bond with these people. Over the course of our stay it had emerged that he was born and raised on a tea plantation so he felt a great deal of empathy.

Today I also walked along the train tracks to the 9 arches bridge-a colonially built bridge and I must say very impressive. The walk though is a killer; it’s a three hour round trip and my ankle is unfortunately feeling a bit the worse for wear. The trains are one of the few benefits I think my ancestors brought to Sri Lanka: the trains, the English language and cricket. As a bit of light relief after my walk I watch the world cup final with the locals, which is great fun, even though Sri Lanka lose to their neighbour and fierce rival, India. For my American audience cricket is a superior form of baseball!

My last big adventure before departing this island was to climb to the top of it. Needless to say it was absolutely pitch black when I exited my hotel (in Delhousie) at 2:45 am to start my ascent of Big Adam. I was thankful that in my still sleepy state, the route up Adam was lit and fairly easy to follow. It was just a question of whether my legs would survive the 5200 steps I would have to climb.

I was accompanied on my climb by several hundred Hindu and Buddhist pilgrims making their way up as well as the odd fellow tourist. Adam’s Peak is named as it is believed by Christians to be the place where Adam first stepped after being cast from heaven. Buddhists often call it ‘Sri Pada’ which means sacred footprint as it is where they believe Buddha left it on his way to paradise whilst Hindus believe the footprint is that of Lord Shiva’s.

I was among the first of the tourists to the top (many of the pilgrims had spent the night up there) and was chuffed with a climbing time of 1 hour 45. My quick time did mean however that I was waiting at the top in the freezing cold and wind before the sunrise. Boy, was it worth the wait. The sun comes up very quickly, but Adam casts a magnificent shadow behind him. The orange glow of the early sun and the Buddhist chants makes the whole experience feel very pure, like you could be there 500 years before. It’s mesmerising. The trek down is a killer-as they say, ‘You’re a fool not climb Adam’s Peak once, but a damn fool to do it again’. Very wise words.

No time for a nap as I reached the bottom at 9 am and devoured some rotis. I had to try and catch the train to Colombo. I missed it. It would have to be the bus. After two buses and 7 hours I finally reunite myself with my parents, greeted by Dad in a traditional Sri Lankan sarong and a nice cold Lion beer. Very nice!

A great end to a super trip and one which I’ll never forget. Thanks to all at Community Friends! I leave you now and close with this photo of the spectacular Sri Lankan beaches. Back to England and my studies at University of Sussex.

Cheers,

John Ainger
Community Friends’ Intern


6

Aug

2011

East Coast Adventures in Ulla

Negotiating the roads in Sri Lanka is an art which I’m sure takes years to master. Instead of looking right, then left and finally right again; you move your head from side to side like a semi-automatic machine gun for the entire width of the road.

I learnt that getting off a Sri Lankan bus also requires a great deal of skill. A skill which I also have not yet mastered. The bus pulled in at Arugambay and just I was getting off I turned my ankle and landed in a crumpled heap in front of several giggling Sri Lankan tuk-tuk drivers. I have not only cracked the screen of my computer but also badly strained my left ankle.

Jeeva and I have made the long journey from the relatively cool 4,000 foot elevation of Community Friends’ tea estate project to the east coast beaches and fishing village of Ulla where Community Friends started its first humanitarian and micro-enterprise projects immediately following the December 2004 tsunami.

Our first night was interesting. Sri Lanka does not have your average city pest. In London, we have foxes which rip open the bins and squirrels which also steal the flowers from my mum’s plants. In the US you have raccoons and the odd Coyote or skunk which play similar roles. Sri Lanka has very few, if any of these animal street dwellers. In Trinconmallee for example they had deer that see the city as a safe haven. Deer! And all over Sri Lanka you have monkeys. Jeewa made the silly mistake of leaving his bedroom window open and in return the monkey left a present on the floor. ‘ Why couldn’t they use the toilet?!’ Jeeva exclaimed.

We went in the village of Ulla, just north of the last human dwelling before Yala National park where Jeewa works. We crossed the bridge, which has been newly built after being washed away by the tsunami. When Community Friends first came here, our volunteers crossed by boat until the bridge was rebuilt.

Our first stop in Ulla was the local school which was also destroyed by the tsunami and greatly helped by Community Friends. Where the climbing frames of the playground now stand, Jeewa told me that it was once a huge hole from where the tsunami wave had lifted the entire school building out to sea. The school is really, really beautiful and once again thriving. It is great seeing Sri Lankan kids on their way to school-all very keen to learn and better themselves. I do wish more of us would have that same attitude in the UK.


Ulla School

Just half an hour ago I was hobbling on my bad ankle along the lovely beach at Arugambay when four dogs saw myself as an easy target and started growling very nastily! I slapped my flip flops aggressively together and ran to the safety of the Sri Lankan fishermen. My humiliation turned out to be a good conversation starter. We talked for a while about the similarities between England and Arugambay of which there were not many before moving on to the more serious matter of the fishing. Again, due to the heavy rains recently there have been a scarce number of fish. Mohammed the captain of the boat said that at one point during February, the lack of fish meant that he and his men had barely anything to eat for a week. Tomorrow, they leave at 4 in the morning and I have been invited to go with them.

4 o’clock is very early! I went fishing today and understood what Mohammed meant about the lack of fish in the sea. The previous day he and his fellow fisherman Karim had dropped their nets and early this morning we went out to reel them in. Mohammed doesn’t have one of the traditional Catamarans as his, like most in Ulla, had been destroyed be the tsunami. He now uses a fibreglass boat donated by another NGO.


John, Mohammed & Karim

The main staple fish of the local area is called Sear fish which can weigh up to 15 pounds or so but these are becoming far rarer. This morning under a spectacular sunrise we only managed to catch one inedible fish in the whole 500 metre long net. I could see the disappointment in both Mohammed’s and Karim’s faces. They then brought out the mackerel lines which resulted in the catch of a dozen or so fish-barely enough to feed their own families.

As Community Friends discovered, even before the tsunami, Ulla’s economy did not provide adequate needs for the people here. This is why Community Friends initiated its first pilot projects, the rice-flour collective and the chilli-grinding collective. These are separate collectives using identical grinders otherwise you end up with spicy roti (bread)—not necessarily a bad thing. The objective of the collectives is to invest in women and seed micro-enterprise businesses.


Ruwanti & her sister

I met a good friend of Community Friends, a young woman named Ruwanti who is now 20 years old. Along with her mother they bring out the customary cup of tea and chat very openly about the tsunami in which they lost five family members. Ruwanti is quite the entrepreneur herself and she makes really gorgeous sculptures out of shells and ceramic pottery to sell at market. It is an example of the kind of resourcefulness and self-sufficient desire of the people of Ulla. I almost bought one of the sculptures but as they were so fragile and my past experience with a bus I decided it was too risky. Community Friends considered the possibility of exporting or distributing Ruwanti’s products; however, the fragile nature created challenges. There are so many challenges for these people, yet they seem relaxed with their lives.

John Ainger
Community Friends’ Intern


1

Jul

2011

Micro-Hydro Electricity Project

Back in 2006, when Community Friends began managing the tea estate, there was no electricity or health care. Villagers have joined Community Friends as partners in land restoration. Community Friends has invested in social programs benefiting the community, like the health clinic and an eco-friendly micro-hydro project. It is remarkable to see how the micro-hydro electricity project provides free electricity to the homes of people who have never had electricity before and allows the locals to watch World Cup cricket!

Community Friends helped install the micro-hydro system. The system equipment was donated by the World Bank and then Community Friends supported the installation. The micro-hydro generator utilizes the abundant water flow in this mountainous region. There is a beautiful stream that runs through the land and drops thousands of feet in elevation from its headwaters. As a result, the generator captures the power of this stream and the village has eliminated the use of burning kerosene by promoting lifestyle shifts away from fossil fuels toward renewable energy. This provides clean power to the village and frees villagers to focus on important tasks rather than constantly struggling to obtain kerosene from far away town centers. In the future, Community Friends plans to utilize solar power as well.

I see the micro-hydro project as being one of the most important developments that Community Friends has brought to the people of Waitalawa. One of the key problems affecting them at the moment, as I see it, is young people moving out of the area–causing a negative cycle and a lack of workforce. Having electricity and connectivity through TV and hopefully the internet at some point is key to reversing this decline. Through community land stewardship and economic development, the people who work this land are becoming more empowered to manage it for themselves, benefiting future generations. This economic transition from the colonial model to a local living economy will create profits that circulate within the community.

John Ainger
Community Friends’ Intern


15

Jun

2011

Health Clinic Visit

Though Community Friends is only a 40 acre district amongst some 300 acres, the impact of Community Friends affects a great deal more. The health clinic, which deals with minor problems (infected cuts, providing vaccines etc.), was established by Community Friends in 2007. The clinic is housed in the original tea estate manager’s colonial-style cottage.

Tikira, age 99, I have discovered, is not the oldest of the residents of Waitalawa. Jeewa and Mutteliagiani introduced me to a 106 year old woman! As soon as we entered she sat up promptly from her rather uncomfortable straw bed to say hello. Jeewa helps me to ask her whether she has any ailments at her ripe age, ‘it is only my eyes that trouble me’ she says, ‘I cannot see as well as I would like but everything else is fine’. I can see why she is doing so very well. She has an absolutely adorable Tamil family who welcome me very sweetly as I step into their home. We pose for a quick snap before they bid me adieu, ‘watalangi’ they say, ‘see you again’. Truly wonderful people.

It later emerges that she is not the oldest one in the village of Waitalawa. Mutteligiani tells Jeewa and me that there is a 110 year old down in the lower part of the village. Imagine that, almost born in the 1800s before the invention of planes let alone space travel! Unfortunately I am unable to meet this incredible lady but Jeewa tells me the secret to a long life here is the diet, the altitude and the hard work. I can believe him. Mutteliagiani tells me that he survives each day on just one rotti and one litre of water per day whilst picking the tea on the Community Friends land.

Dr. Ajith (right in photo), a volunteer doctor with Community Friends, led the effort to establish the clinic and then transitioned the day to day operations to Marudamuththu Rajandran (left in photo), who is now the EMO (Estate Medical Officer). Today, Marudamuththu attends to a wide variety of patient needs. Having access to local health care is a great gift for these people. Before Community Friends established the clinic, the nearest medical care was at the general hospital in Kandy city, a long commute by foot and bus which many cannot afford. Marudamuththu is a fantastic guy who allowed Jeewa and me to stay at the clinic.

John Ainger
Community Friends’ Intern


7

Jun

2011

John & Jeeva in Waitalawa

Waitalawa is such an incredible place. The Community Friends tea estate here is situated in 40 acres of land and is one of the highest tea plantations in the Knuckles Mountain Range. It is also the only organic tea estate here.

Our driver, Yappa, who took us up to the land, does incredibly well negotiating the winding dirt track. After picking up vital supplies, we happen to pass the village manager, K.P., and a couple of the local residents. So with typical Sri Lankan kindness we give them a lift to the top. I must say I was slightly nervous about introducing myself as an Englishman from London assuming there would be some bitterness toward the British who set up the tea plantations in the first place. There isn’t. K.P. straight away tells me how the superintendent for the area 40 years ago went by the name of ‘Richard’ and was also an Englishman from London!

Furthermore I am greeted with smiles all round from the tea pickers and in particular from Soma and Tikira, who are hosting us. Tikira is one of the oldest residents in the village. He has a couple of tattoos on his arms. They are hard to make out but he says that they are of a bird and a stag. I ask him when he got them and he tells me that he was once a bit of a rebel in his youth–drinking and smoking with his friends. He doesn’t now though, and he seems almost apologetic about his past and now leads a very simple life. Now he enjoys gardening with Dasuni, his great granddaughter. Dasuni had a very difficult birth and we are very fortunate that she is here today—thanks to the doctors and directors of Community Friends who assisted with the birth.


Dasuni, age 2, with Tikira, age 99.

Before K.P. goes home to eat dinner with his wife, I with the help of Jeewa ask how the tea estate is going. K.P. as the land manager has a tough job, telling workers each morning where they will be working for the rest of the day. These decisions can greatly affect the villagers’ income. Anyway, things have been quite tough lately on the tea estates due to two main problems. Firstly, there has been an unprecedented 8 months of rain which has badly affected the tea crop this year and has contributed to soil erosion. Secondly, and possibly more worryingly, there is a shortage of tea pickers. Jeewa had noticed this on the drive up that many of the plants are passed the point of picking. Young men in particular are leaving Waitalawa and seeking better paid, less work jobs in the city. That now is the major problem that has to be tackled.

John Ainger
Community Friends’ Intern


30

May

2011

John Ainger in Sri Lanka

John Ainger, a Community Friends’ intern, has been traveling in Sri Lanka and sharing his insights. John will be attending University of Sussex in the fall. He is studying micro-enterprise and ecological economics with Community Friends.

After a long flight from London via Bahrain, I have just arrived at my hotel in Negombo with Jeewa, the naturalist for Community Friends. It is quite the flight into Colombo. Colombo is right next to the Second biggest lagoon in Sri Lanka (Jeewa hit me with his first fact) and it is very daunting as you fly low over this stretch of water. It is about 31 degrees Celsius but it is starting to cool and the infamous Sri Lankan mosquitoes are just waking up to begin the hunt…


Jeeva and John

Already I have an early insight into the role Community Friends has to play in Sri Lanka. On the flight over from Bahrain I sat next to a lady who had clearly been removed from her home village to work in Bahrain as a servant. Initially I presumed she had been holidaying in Bahrain, but when she said she wasn’t I began to recall some of the stories I have been told about young women being taken from their home to work in the Middle East.

I asked her what Bahrain was like she said quietly, ‘Bahrain nice, Bahrain people not nice’. I decided not to ask any more on that topic but told her my plans. She seemed very happy to be coming home. I presume she could not read English as she did not recognize the names of the places I was going to on the map. I have to say I did not realize that I would so soon discover the implications of lack of education for a woman in Sri Lanka.

Jeewa knows everyone. Even those he doesn’t know, he knows. It’s quite remarkable. I think we passed a dozen long lost friends on the road as we traveled northeast from Negombo to Kandy!

John Ainger
Community Friends’ Intern


20

May

2011

Portland State University Study

Dr. Jeanne Enders of Portland State University’s School of Business reports on her experience studying the work of Community Friends for an international case study competition.

In the late summer and fall of 2010, a group of us from the School of Business at Portland State University began writing a case based upon the activities of Community Friends from the time of the tsunami until 2010.

In late October, we entered this case into an international competition, The oikos Case Writing Competition (http://www.oikos-international.org/academic/cwc/) in the social entrepreneurship track. While we didn’t win the competition, we learned a great deal about the plight of women in Sri Lanka, the beauty of multi-national partnerships, the power of women’s collectives, philosophies of project ownership, the tea industry, carbon offsets and most importantly, we learned in detail about Community Friends.

Our team: Toby Roberts, undergraduate honors student, marketing major; Caroline Lewis, Masters of Business Administration graduate student; Dr. Jeanne Enders; and Alia Long, Masters of International Management graduate student.

Some of the key issues that surfaced in our case include the following:

1.) Project Identification and Ownership – the school lunch program emerged when teachers identified the problem. Ownership of the program shifted over time from a Community Friends/parent & teacher partnership to a government/parent & teacher partnership. Is this a generalizable model or is it sometimes best for outsiders to define and hang onto a project? Under what conditions is one method preferred over another and why?

2.) Microfinance vs. Microequity Models for the Collectives – why was microfinance rejected as an option for Community Friends at a specific juncture? Community Friends had the financing in place but decided to develop a microequity program instead. What does this mean and what are advantages and disadvantages of each model?

3.) Sustainability of Programs in Volatile Times and Places – Community Friends faced huge challenges by trying to operate in Ulla, a war-torn and difficult-to-reach region hit especially hard by the tsunami. Why do many social business initiatives avoid such places and what were some of the costs and benefits – tangible and intangible – to targeting such a region? What ultimately happened to the projects there? How are disaster relief organizations different from social entrepreneurship programs?

4.) Unintended Consequences or Surprises – The most surprising development in the Community Friends story, in our opinion, is the realization that upon purchasing a tea estate, Community Friends was suddenly made responsible for a group of people who for generations lived and worked on the estate and who depend completely upon the success of the estate. Are there other potential unintended consequences or likely surprises? How should one respond to such developments?

5.) Long-Term Environmental Protection vs. Short-Term Economic Pressure – The pressure of needing to support the village on the tea estate makes it challenging to transition the estate from a traditional farming method to an organic method of agriculture, or a more diverse agriculture. Transaction or transition costs take on more than just a “business meaning” when you are responsible for a group of vulnerable workers.

6.) Financial Models for Revenue Generation in Long-Term Social Enterprise – What profit-formula or revenue generation scheme is best-suited to Community Friends? Carbon offsets offer their own set of challenges but fit the values of Community Friends. How do we create an entrepreneurial spirit in the tea estate workers AND the college students recruited to sell offsets? Does the Community Friends staff need to be “motivation experts”? Also, are there other revenue generation models at this stage in Community Friends’ development that are being overlooked?

Conclusion:

We are so very grateful for the opportunity to work on this project. In addition to the written portion of the case, this project included creating a video (http://vimeo.com/16295333). The potential of the women’s collective and the tea estate as tools for social and economic improvement offer such hope for the role business can play in changing the world. We hope, at the very least, to use this case in classrooms to surface conversations about social business.

Thanks!

Jeanne Enders, PhD