News | Basics Needs & Social Entrepreneurship 30.10.2013

CIDG meets empowering people. Award: Empowering People Workshop in Nairobi

CIDG members meet "empowering people. Award" winners
© Siemens Stiftung

The Community is growing: the fourth conference hosted by the Community Impact Development Group (CIDG) was also attended by the winners of the “empowering people. Award”. 14 CIDG members and 23 winners of the "empowering people. Award" who were partly accompanied by their local partners, came to Nairobi, Kenia, on October 29th, to take part in the “Empowering People Workshop”. It was an excellent opportunity to meet new, like-minded people and to exchange ideas and experiences.

The CIDG motto “Technologies for human needs” also applies to the winners of the “empowering people. Award”. All of them have the goal to improve basic needs with simple yet innovative technologies and thus, to contribute to a positive social, ecologic and economic change. The objective of the workshop was to bring together this international group of people and to enable a fruitful exchange of diverse experiences.

Aline Wachter, a Ph.D. student from the research institute IRENE I SEE (International Research Network on Social Economic Empowerment) held an impulse speech on the strategic orientation of social entrepreneurship. Afterwards, the participants shared the approaches of their own companies and discussed the diverse challenges they have to face.

Simon Stumpf and Michael Vollmann from Ashoka, one of the largest international organizations fostering social entrepreneurship and a cooperation partner of the CIDG, addressed the topics scaling and replication. Afterwards, several participants with the same interests gathered in small groups to discuss their topics. For example the group choosing the issue energy welcomed Henri Nyakarundi from Rwanda as participant, who has developed a solar powered mobile charging station. He especially talked to Andreas Spieß from the German Solarkiosk GmbH: “It was fantastic. The ideas are similar and I can learn a lot from him. To exchange thoughts with other entrepreneurs who are active in the same field is very rewarding.”

Some of the CIDG participants, such as Anders Wilhelmson and Haron Wachira, already work together – maybe there will be even more cooperations among CIDG participants and "empowering people. Award" finalists….