Following the 2000s, socially sensitive young people in Britain have established the international Impact Hub network, which was joined by more than 100 cities worldwide since its foundation. Each office is an integral part of the local entrepreneurial ecosystem, but also part of their active international network.
Image source: https://www.facebook.com/ImpactHubBudapest/
Besides being a coworking office, Impact Hub Budapest organizes numerous programs for entrepreneurs. Flagship organisations of responsible employment created the Incorpora network, which was joined by the Impact Hub Budapest, too. They provide free mentoring and training opportunities for entrepreneurs and startups. Through their program, they help entrepreneurs refine the business idea, develop the business plan and kick-start their business and they also connect the startups with members of their professional network.
The Social Impact Award is dedicated to mentor the sustainable, environmental and social ideas of young teams. The award is organized in Hungary by Impact Hub Budapest.
The Social Impact Award is more than a prize: the world’s largest training and support program for young people to help develop ideas related to sustainability, environmental and social innovation. The participants are introduced to the culture of entrepreneurship through events and workshops. The program works internationally in 88 cities in more than 20 countries, with over 8000 participants.
The winners of previous years are all committed to contributing to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.
Finalists of Social Impact Award Hungary 2019. Image source: https://hungary.socialimpactaward.net/
The program is based on four pillars:
- participants get support in developing new social enterprise concepts,
- entrepreneurial mindset and skills development are core principals of their educational activities,
- participants get involved in an international business community,
- they support the best teams with mentoring and even capital.
Partner organizations and companies, experts and external mentors help their work.
The finalists of the 2019 Hungarian program were announced in June. The teams and their ideas could participate in a three-step incubation and mentoring program. Although there are different sustainability or social ideas among the final teams, there is a clear point in common: the role of the community in each project is important – similar to crowdfunding.
The Romama Food Truck project’s main goal is to create new street food rooting in authentic gypsy cuisine and spread the delicacies via a food truck to reach as many people as possible.
The idea came from a collaboration with a Hungarian Roma organization that is working in an underprivileged area. They already have enterprises, including a small restaurant and accommodation service, but they still have to work on reaching their target audience. The team wants to help them maintain a sustainable enterprise, and at the same time, bring closer the Romani culture to Hungarian people. This concept also supports youngsters to keep their traditions and shows a positive role model.
Video source: Social Impact Award, YouTube
Alexa Zsófia Vas and her team were among the finalists of 2019. The idea of Low-Cost Robotic Hand was born in 2017: Alexa started to work on non-muscular prostheses and 3D printing before graduation – not surprisingly, she originally wanted to become a doctor. She currently studies mechanical engineering while building her own business. Social Impact Award incubation program also played a major role in developing the idea, the business plan, the product and the validation. Now they have an MVP prosthesis and a business model: the sale of prostheses and the support of children in need are also part of it. In the meantime, the team of three continuously participates in different competitions and also looks for an angel investor.
Alexa Zsófia Vas and the Low-Cost Robotic Hand team at the final event of Social Impact Award Hungary 2019. Image source: Alexa Zsófia Vas.
What could be the next step for the program’s finalists?
In addition to continuous business development, market research and networking, they can advance their business by involving investors in a crowdfunding round – a well-functioning business with social impact attracts retail investors, too.