What comes to your mind when you hear the words “Fragile States”? Yes, a “Fragile State” is a developing country that is characterized by weak state capacity or weak state legitimacy, leaving citizens vulnerable to a range of shocks. For instance, the World Bank deems a country to be “fragile” if it:
1: is eligible for assistance from the International Development Association.
2: has had a UN peacekeeping mission in the last three years
3: has received a governance score of less than 3.2
These countries include more than a billion poor citizens. These countries are either in conflict or has been in conflict that has caused a considerable number of its citizens to either lose their lives or to refuge in other countries with a better situation and norms of living.
“Fragile States/Countries” started attracting the attention of international community and donor agencies since a decade and followed by injecting billions of dollars to these countries. This brings the question: did the funds really solve the problem?
Could it bring stability in the government system, security, economy or the the way people are thinking about their own countries?
Recently, we ended in a conclusion that most of the donor agencies who tried to take part in helping economically these countries have failed to target and address the most pressing problems. There could be possibly lots of reason behind it such as lack of information on local context, using the top down approach (The top-down approach relies on higher actors to determine larger goals with low involvement of lower level actors)rather than bottom-up approach (a decision-making process that gives the entire system actors a voice and make them part of the decision making process)
, choosing the wrong channels for injecting the fund, failing to identify the right partners, and stakeholders and some other reasons. Perhaps, it is the time to propose new solutions for some of these old challenges!
Almost less then a year ago, a new movement started to rise in order to change the narrative on fragile context. This movement started in Afghanistan and grew global. impACT as a global movement for social and systemic impact through entrepreneurship was initiated in order to strengthen the global startup ecosystem by facilitating an exchange of resources, knowledge, and networks; especially in view of the fragile environments.
According to impACT team, Social entrepreneurship, that is simply explained as doing business for a social cause is the key in order to bring positive change in the context of fragile states.
Social Entrepreneurs from the fragile countries are able to build a socio-economic stable community by targeting the main reasons and roots of fragility in their countries such as the weak economic and social situation that leads to a weak political situation. Because they are well aware of the challenges and they have entrepreneurial DNA (refer to those who are passionate about starting their own enterprises).
Social Entrepreneurs can work as a catalyst for change in their communities. People in different countries are attracted to businesses, using social entrepreneurship model. That is how they will have a greater feeling than just spending money, because they pay money and contribute to a social cause with greater and lasting impact.
Social Entrepreneurs help people in living a better life with less problems and challenges. They are using a model which combines the business/commerce and social causes and each time target a specific group of people connected to the cause and help them in living a better life. Therefore, we are able to state that their success is considered as others success in their own life.
Finally, social entrepreneurs create job opportunities, decrease the unemployment rate which is one of the important reasons for joining youth to insurgent groups. Also, they can be considered a source of hope and inspiration for those who plan to move and leave their country due to fragility.
Join our impACT family and help us spread the social entrepreneurship further in order to contribute to a better future!