Celebrating entrepreneurs who create social, environmental and economic values
On 18 December 2012, five ordinary people doing extraordinary work will be recognised and rewarded with the Surya Nepal Asha Social Entrepreneurship Award (SNASEA). We introduce you to the 15 finalists (in alphabetical order), who have been cease-lessly working towards creating value for people and planet along with sustaining themselves.
Amrit Ratna Shakya, AR Fashion Design & Sewing Institute, Lalitpur. Shakya opened this venture to fight against the stigma associated with differently-abled persons like himself. “I was con-sidered to be a burden by my own parents and was never thought of having any potential to be self-reliant,” shares Shakya.
Dr Bishal Dhakal, Health at Home Private Limited (HHPL), Kathmandu. HHPL is a novel approach, which is focusing on the provision of health services right at home. “It is our honour to make the first step in the area of personalised medical health care in Nepal,” says Dhakal.
Bishnu Thakali, Solid Waste Management and Community Mobilisation Programme, Lalitpur. The programme was started to address the problem of solid waste. “When women weren’t allowed to work, a group of housewives came together to initiate work in the field of solid waste management by converting the ‘waste’ into ‘resource’,” shares Thakali.
Chiranjeevi Poudel, Seeing Hands Clinic, Kathmandu. Seeing Hands addresses the issue of lack of employment opportunities for the visually impaired. “Despite my impaired vision, I have risen above the challenge and I am running my own business,” says Poudel.
Govinda Ghimire, Alternative Herbal Pvt Ltd, Bhaktapur. Alternative Herbal was started to reduce wastage of natural resources and to create market linkage. “I don’t want producers to face the risks and problems of market reach like I did years ago,” explains Ghimire.
Jasmaya Pun, Hampaal Allo Tatha Kapada Bunai Udhyog, Shalija -7, Parbat. Unemployment and discrimination led Jasmaya to start her own venture. “When I fell sick, nobody was ready to loan me money for my treatment. It was then that I realised the need to gain some life skills. So, I opened this venture utilising local resources from the forest,” says Pun.
Khom Raj Sharma, Inclusion Empowerment Centre, Pokhara. Non-availability of visually impaired friendly cyber cafés and heavy donor dependency inspired Sharma to commence this venture. “I am a visually impaired activist whose mission is to overcome societal and economic challenges,” he claims.
Kumud Singh, Alpine Coffee Estate, Nuwakot. Alpine Coffee aims to address the problem of lack of commercial agriculture activities in Nepal despite its huge potential. “In a country where most young men prefer going abroad for employment, or prefer working behind a desk, we have taken this step towards agriculture,” shares Singh.
Nishesh Rai, PANN Brick Pvt Ltd, Dhankuta. The venture was started due to the lack of quality and affordable bricks and the exodus of youths to foreign countries. “I want to encourage energetic and innovative youth to stay home and do something like me, in whatever scale they can,” says Rai.
Prachanda Shakya, Nepal Traditional Handicraft Training Centre, Lalitpur. The institute has been keeping the legacy of traditional art alive. “In 2005, Aksheswor Mahabihar, the only training institute of its kind was shut down and I, along with my friends, decided to open a training institute to keep the legacy alive,” explains Shakya.
Sanu Kaji Shrestha, Foundation for Sustainable Technologies (FoST), Kathmandu. Shortage of cooking fuel and wastage of materials led to the establishment of FoST. “FoST is a mother institute which produces entrepreneurs at the household level by mobilising natural and human resources from their own house,” says Shrestha.
Shanti Dolma Shakya, Kakani Himalayan Natural Dyes, Kakani. Health problems and negative impact created by artificial dyes encouraged the team to start the natural dyes venture. “The financial empowerment and independence gained by women has also reduced episodes of domestic violence,” shares Shakya.
Som Prasad Gauchan, Everest Tea Estate Pvt Ltd, Bhotechaur Village, Sindhupalchowk. Everest Tea Estate was established to address the extreme backwardness of Bhotechaur village. “In the course of our discussion with the locals to find an alternative to migration, we realised the multi-faceted benefit of tea farming in terms of employment, income, land conservation and ecological balance,” explains Gauchan.
Tara Baskota Adhikari, Shangri-La Agro World, Panchthar, Phidim. Unfair prices to farmers due to lack of proper processing and marketing led Adhikari to establish Shangri-La Agro World. “I was born and brought up in the village. I can clearly understand the problems of the growers,” she claims.
Thaneshwar Bhusal, Saamudayik Khadya Prasodhan Udhyog, Mudikuwa – 6, Parbat. The venture controls the wastage of local agro-products. “The contribution to the farmers of Parbat from this venture has been remarkable in the sense that it has created employment, generated revenue and also promoted tourism,” shares Bhusal
More details are available at: https://asha2012.wordpress.com/2012/10/17/top-15-finalists-of-snasea-2012/
(Shakya is the programme co-coordinator, while Rana is the media, communications and programme coordinator at ChangeFusion Nepal. They can be reached at email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org)