Last Updated Dec 15, 2008 12:22 PM EST
- 7-month-old Bright Endeavors is one of a growing number of charities that are adding business arms to help sustain their enterprises. [Their] Dreambean candles, which cost $5 to $15, generate much-needed revenue to support programming and reduce the need for donations.
- "[Social entrepreneurship] has boomed in the last two to three years," as more entrepreneurs see the impact other social ventures are having, said Benet DeBerry-Spence, assistant marketing professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago, who launched a for-profit social venture in Ghana. "People are starting to demonstrate that it works. That's starting the bandwagon effect."
Yet the social enterprise movement has its critics, at least according to Wikipedia. Some argue that entrepreneurs are exploiting a social problem for profit. Others argue that business's primary role is to deliver wealth to shareholders, not use profits to solve a social problem that would be best handled by a charity or government.