He's a really charismatic guy who I met at a seminar on CSR inspired innovation a week or two ago. He had a whole lot of interesting and inspiring stuff to tell me about their organisation.
We had a long and interesting chat.
At The Aid Agency we talk to businesses a lot about having a purpose beyond profit. A 'point' if you like. MyC4 is the perfect example of this. They're driven people. They know were they are going and they know why they are going there.
Anyway, more about MyC4 the brand another time. Hopefully we're going to do something together. (are you kidding, I'm going to make it my personal mission to work with these guys)
This post is actually a call to action.
Their aim is to eradicate poverty through business before 2015 and they're going to do that with you investing your money in developing world businesses. Significantly, they're not asking you for a 'free' loan. In fact, you can't 'donate' a loan. There's a minimum return rate of 2%, which has sparked a lively debate within the MyC4 community.
Another exciting aspect to this is the possibilities which arise when the community start to discuss stuff that crops up. Tim told me really inspiring story about a restaurant business. The owner appealed to the community for suggestions for names. What she got back wasn't just the name but logo suggestions and all kinds of related feedback. I find this fascinating. The potential for the investment of resources in this manner seems limitless.
Anyway, back to the job in hand. I urge you to take a look around. (it's still in beta right now) and maybe you could become a 'builder' too.
To paraphrase Sir Bob at Live Aid. 'Give them your f******g money' or maybe that should be 'Give yourself some f******g money (whilst doing some good)' Doesn't have the same headline-grabbing ring to it but it makes more sense.
Here's an entire site dedicated to getting creative with IKEA products. I really like idea of breathing life into household objects that you might be getting a little bored with and it's certainly greener.
The UK government have launched a carbon calculator recognising the complexity and confusion in this area.
"This calculator is a real innovation, using up-to-date, authoritative data and recognised calculation methods. As the calculator improves and develops I want it to become the gold standard for calculating CO2 emissions from individuals and families," said David Millband looking a little smug and pleased with himself. (probably)
I think this is a brilliant initiative. I'm not sure if we have one over here in Denmark. Maybe we should suggest it?
"The world is full of people who want to make a difference. People who are interested in helping others and the wider environment. i-genius helps people promote what they are doing, their work, their ideas, their passion – and through our community, enables them to connect with others.
In our community we seek to stimulate fresh thinking and bright ideas, and inspire a new generation to become 'social entrepreneurs'. Social entrepreneurs are individuals who create or develop businesses (whether commercial or not for profit) where the primary focus is on social change.
i-genius also seeks to stimulate partnerships between our members and to support them by developing partnerships with established organisations (corporations, NGOs, government, media).
If have an idea or passion that you hope will be of benefit to others and the world we live in, we welcome you to join i-genius."
I spotted this article on Guerrilla Innovation which points at the development of another ad-blocking peice of technology. It made me think. If it's possible to susbscribe to a service which takes away ads and replaces them with art, in theory, it should be possible to take away the adverts and replace them with altenative messages? Maybe someone with a worthy cause? Should we start a similar network of small NGO's who need the advertising space? Just a thought.