On Thursday, April 17, members of the Elon Microfinance Initiative competed in the Triple Impact Challenge sponsored by the Elon University Doherty Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership. The Triple Impact Challenge is a competition designed for students to research social problems and provide entrepreneurial solutions to those problems. EMI members Anna DeDufour, Denis Dotson, Paige Edwards, and presented their “Globes to Give Back” idea to help those in poverty. EMI placed third in the competition and won $200.
Scott Kelly, Instructor of Marketing and assistant director of the Doherty Center, believes strongly in the idea of entrepreneurship in a business education. “Our vision is to teach a systematic approach to solve problems in the world,” he said. “We are excited about the opportunity to work with colleagues across the Elon campus. As we increase the number of student projects (“shots on goal”) then we will see exciting results.”
The Globes to Give Back campaign is a program designed to raise awareness and money for those in need around the world. The globes, pictured below, can be purchased for as little as $1 from local restaurants, stores, and Elon University dining halls. These funds will be used towards Elon University’s Kiva team, which is designed to provide low-capital, low-interest loans to small business owners and entrepreneurs around the world.
“I wanted to come up with an idea that made it easy, simple, and not time-consuming for people at Elon and the local community to donate a dollar to KIVA” Paige Edwards said of the project. “The donations are all recycled since they are only loans, which I think is what makes KIVA and fundraising for them so great. The idea is completely sustainable. I was inspired by St. Jude’s donation process, and kind of took it from there.”
Since 2011, Elon Microfinance Initiative has loaned $1,300 through Kiva to 33 small businesses in 21 countries in South America, Africa, Europe, and Asia. EMI has contributed $475 in capital to Kiva, which means that for $1.00 we have contributed, we have made $2.73 in economic impact. We plan on contributing the $200 prize to continue the growth of our Kiva team and positively impact entrepreneurs around the world!