Wheelock College President Asks Us to “Think Globally, Act Locally” in Recent Huffington Post Blog
Wheelock College President Jackie Jenkins-Scott contributes a blog post monthly to the Huffington Post. In her most recent post, she encourages readers to think globally and act locally. She begins by illustrating one particular solution in action:
In India, the Deshpande Center for Social Entrepreneurship turned the social innovation technology model on its head five years ago. Through supply-chain and engineering methods, the Center tackled the global issue of hunger on a local scale. They developed a system to provide daily hot meals to poor Indian schoolchildren for only 12 cents each. By bringing the for-profit discipline to the compassion of a non-profit, the service provided 85,000 affordable, locally sourced meals.
She then goes on to connect it to a similar program in Boston, the home of Wheelock College:
This idea to pioneer new models to solve global problems, perfect them by partnering with local leadership and spread them to other parts of the world is the foundation of the Deshpande Center’s Social Innovation Sandbox. In the Boston area, the Merrimack Valley Sandbox promotes social entrepreneurship and leadership in Lowell and Lawrence, by funding more than 600 student and youth entrepreneurs, working with more than 300 adult entrepreneurs, and partnering with 30 community organizations.
President Jenkins-Scott describes how she was “enthralled and inspired” by the Deshpande Center’s founder, Desh Deshpande. At the 2013 Global Challenges and Opportunities Conference, he spoke about “the potential for innovation and social entrepreneurship to meet commercial and social needs both locally and globally.” Here is a clip of his talk:
Desh Deshpande Addresses the 2013 Global Challenges and Opportunities Conference
President Jenkins-Scott goes on to discuss how other speakers at the conference were successful in thinking globally, but acting locally. One example is Cherie Blair, founder of the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women.
[Cherie] Blair’s foundation has worked in 70 countries in South America, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia, to develop programs that build confidence, capability and capital in women. She cited an example of how her Foundation partnered with a phone company in India. They developed a mobile application to allow women to sell dried goods more efficiently via text message orders rather than spending a day traveling door-to-door.