Social Entrepreneurship: A Conversation on Harnessing Business for Social Good - StartUp HERE Toronto

Want to make an impact on the world? Thinking about charities, non-profits, or social entrepreneurship but don’t quite know where to start?

Dr. Mayrose Salvador, a U of T alumna 0T7, has made an impact on global science education. She founded the charity Pueblo Science after completing her PhD in the Department of Chemistry. Over the past seven years the charity has trained over 2,800 science teachers across six countries. Also, they host science camps and festivals for local children in Canada.

However, charities are not the only way to make a difference. Ian Adamson, the founder of Greenbelt Microgreens, has a triple bottom line business dedicated to profit, people, and the planet.

The two social entrepreneurs will be joined by Morgan Wyatt, a co-founder of Greenlid Envirosciences, at the latest session of Entrepreneurship 100: Conversations on Thursday September 28. The event will feature a conversation on social entrepreneurship and harnessing the power of business for social good.

Hosted by the Impact Centre, Entrepreneurship 100 brings U of T students and the public into the conversation on entrepreneurship and connects outstanding entrepreneurs to the community.

We caught up with Dr. Salvador in advance of the free event to ask about her experiences founding and running Pueblo Science.

What inspired Pueblo Science?

Prof. Cynthia Goh and I started Pueblo Science in 2010 because of our desire to make a difference in remote villages of developing countries. Growing up in a remote community in the Philippines, many of the normal practices of my childhood were detrimental to our health and the environment. Improving science education helps people understand that infections are caused by bacteria, not bad spirits. We can also inspire the next generation to create new knowledge and technologies that can improve their quality of life.

What is the goal of Pueblo Science?

Our goal is to ignite the wonder of science and the world around us in children across the globe. We do this by hosting science festivals in Toronto for elementary school-aged children as well as through our global RISE (Rural Initiative for Science Education) program. RISE partners with local Ministries of Education, school boards, and teachers to host teacher training workshops for local science teachers. Our volunteers run workshops to educate the teachers on topics from genetics to robotics. Also, we teach simple and easy experiments that they can run in their own classrooms using locally available materials. Providing these hands-on experiments is one of the best ways to keep children engaged in science.

What has surprised you while developing Pueblo Science?

I knew when we started that I would have to learn many things to direct a charitable organization. But after seven years, I am still amazed at how much more work is needed behind-the-scenes. At the same time, I am humbled by the generosity of the many people who have helped us over the years. They are very much willing to put in expertise, hours, and resources to help us along the way – and I am so grateful to all of them for their support.

What is your vision for the future of Pueblo Science?

The future needs a new generation of scientists, inventors, engineers, and a scientifically curious public. Our part in creating this future depends on delivering our current programs and expanding into new communities. For this to happen, we need to attract volunteers, board members, and donors with the right skills to help or guide us in making the organization efficient and sustainable and support us in our vision to bring that “science spark” to places that need it most.

Source: Startup Here Toronto