They See Possibilities, Not Problems


I like hanging out with quirky and creative people. A high percentage of them are social entrepreneurs. Not only are they interesting, they are special because unlike a lot of people who see problems, they have a tendency to see possibilities. 

If you happen to be a social entrepreneur, you already know being one rarely means an easy path. For most, it likely isn’t even a conscious career choice as it’s more about an innate drive to respond to pressing social challenges, and, ideally make money while you’re doing it.

For some it’s a response to poverty, inequality, climate change, health, education, or human rights. In my case it’s about amplifying community collaboration and informed decision-making.

In general, social entrepreneurs have a tendency to be passionate, curious, resilient, stubborn, impatient, adaptable, and yes, sometimes annoying - especially in change-resistant settings.

Catalyst2030 is a global network of the social entrepreneurs and innovators described above. In total they represent 129 countries (including Canada), 4159 members and over 2708 organizations committed to advancing the United Nations 17 Social Development Goals. These SDGs serve as a blueprint representing the world’s most pressing issues. The growth of Catalyst2030 has been remarkable considering that it was only launched in Davos, Switzerland in July 2020 at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF).

Last week Catalyst2030 showcased the best of global social entrepreneurs as they hosted their third annual Awards designed to accelerate collaborative systems change by celebrating the individuals and organizations that make it possible.

It was especially exciting for Canadians because Canada’s own federal government won a major award in the Government category! See photos and the story at this link.

However, what was even more impressive is that Catalyst2030, despite being a significantly large organization, demonstrated their own agility and resourcefulness in taking advantage of the awards to also launch their own Global Social Innovation Day. What demonstrated that nimbleness was that it was only decided at the end of October, discussed at a board meeting on October 18th, voted on in the General Assembly on October 25th, and made a reality on November 9th.


While I am a member of Catalyst2030 and am serving as the Chair of the Canada Chapter, I can’t take any credit for the launch of the Global Social Innovation Day but it deserves a round of applause for having achieved with such a tight timeframe.

Global Social innovation Day is something to celebrate. For sure it tops National Pickle Day, National Pothole Day, and definitely, National Clean Out Your Refrigerator Day! Yep, those are for real! 

So here’s to social innovation as well as the many social entrepreneurs who help to make it happen as they inspire others, serve as role models, and ultimately contribute to a better world.

Posted on 11-15-23

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