ASEAN Launches Social Enterprises Collaborative Projects

Asia-Pacific, October 31 2016

JAKARTA: Three collaborative projects between social enterprises in ASEAN were launched on Wednesday, October 26, 2016, during the Project Showcase of ASEAN Conference on Social Entrepreneurship 2016 in Jakarta.

The event was attended by over 100 people from ASEAN member states, Japan and Australia, as well as social enterprises, business incubators, investors, development agencies, and international NGOs.

The projects were results from three months of collaborative efforts between social enterprises in ASEAN from three sectors, namely food and agriculture, culture and tourism, and health and disability. The ASEAN Conference on Social Entrepreneurship: Project Showcase is the second gathering of social enterprises and public-private partners in the region, to showcase regional collaboration projects that were developed during the first conference held in Singapore in July 2016.

Executive Director of the ASEAN Foundation Elaine Tan said that this initiative was the first attempt to create concrete collaborations between social enterprises in ASEAN. This initiative was in itself a collaborative project between UnLtd Indonesia and Singapore International Foundation with the full support from the ASEAN Foundation.

The first project, TripAbility: Travel for all Abilities is an online tourism platform initiated by three social enterprises – Kerjabilitas (Indonesia), Epic Arts Cafe (Cambodia) and DNetwork (Indonesia) – providing advice to people with disabilities on accessible tourism destinations and facilities, as a stepping stone towards a barrier-free tourism movement in SEA region. Like a TripAdvisor for people with disabilities, TripAbility will enable peer reviews/ratings of businesses and eventually offer tailor made tours, holiday packages and bookings directly on the platform. In doing so, the TripAbility aims to promote accessible tourism destinations and disability-friendly social enterprises, expand the market size in tourism and create a more inclusive society.

The second project, the Agrigator Platform was designed by three social enterprises in ASEAN working in the agriculture sector, namely Javara (Indonesia), NokHook (Thailand) and DVIC (Vietnam). It is a searchable database of verified food producers in Southeast Asia that aims to connect investors and buyers around the world and provide accurate information and technical assistance to these enterprises.

The third project, Map for Good: Follow the Impact Trail is a unique map enabling travellers to seek out social enterprises in all ASEAN countries. The project was developed by Batik Boutique (Malaysia), Ock Pop Tok (Laos), Kinyei (Cambodia), Backstreet Academy (Singapore), Color Silk (Cambodia) and Friends International (Cambodia). The map will feature tour agents, restaurants, retail shops and more that qualify as social enterprises within our charter and make it easier for travelers to support these businesses during their travels.

Leonardo A. A. Teguh Sambodo, Director for Industry, Tourism, and Creative Economy, National Development Planning Agency, said that the role of social enterprises in supporting government’s work and responsibility cannot be understated. In Indonesia there are various socio-economic and environmental issues that need to be addressed together by government, private sector and civil society.

Source: Tempo

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