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Why Social Entrepreneurs Could Use a Little More Faith

Long before Toms, Kiva, and Warby Parker, churches, synagogues, and mosques have pushed social change, so why so little secular collaboration?


As your average Fast Company subscribing, TED Talks-watching, New York Times reading, SXSW obsessed pop culture junkie, I know a few things about social innovation. Having followed the game-changing efforts of TOMs Shoes, Kiva, Kickstarter and Warby Parker, it's easy to think of social innovation and entrepreneurship as a secular thing. A recent Southern California Faith-Based Social Innovation Forum showed though that when it comes to collaboration with faith-based social entrepreneurs, there's plenty of room for growth.

The forum, held in Los Angeles and co-hosted by Jewish Jumpstart, and Community Partners, was organized on the heels of this summer's White House Faith-Based Social Innovators Conference. Jumpstart co-founder and CEO Shawn Landres attended the White House summit and saw an opportunity to inspire local change. He and fellow White House guest Paul Vandeventer, head of Community Partners, began working on the idea of a regional follow-up.

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Meet The White House's Resident Social Entrepreneur

Jonathan Greenblatt has big plans for the White House Office of Social Innovation and Community Service. First up: Listening.


As new hybrids of philanthropy and business exercise growing economic power, the White House’s top adviser on do-goodery wants to increase the government’s support for social enterprise.

In the bright first months after his inauguration, President Barack Obama launched the White House Office of Social Innovation and Civic Engagement, a bureaucratic grab-bag with responsibilities for community service, investing in successful and innovative community initiatives, and “new models of partnership.”

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NextGen:Charity: Discussing the Future of Philanthropy

There is a new conference for nonprofits and philanthropies featuring great speakers. And GOOD readers can get discounted tickets.

I'd like to draw your attention to a a great conference going on in New York on November 18 and 19. It's called NextGen:Charity, and it's goal is to "help you run your organization more effectively and efficiently, and connect with donors and your community more powerfully."

Speakers include Seth Goodin, Scott Belsky, Matt Mahan from Facebook Causes, and former GOOD CEO Jonathan Greenblat (among many others). The conference is going to feature TED-style talks from all the speakers that will later be available online. If you're interested in attending, GOOD readers can get a discount by purchasing their tickets here.

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