Five social entrepreneurs older than 60 are the 2011 winners of the Purpose Prize, which recognizes innovators who are making an impact in the second halves of their lives. Now in its sixth year, the Purpose Prize is a program from Civic Ventures, a San Francisco-based think tank on boomers, work and social purpose.
This year’s winners include:
• A San Francisco Bay Area screenwriter, who adopted two daughters from China in her 50s, then found a way to partner with the Chinese government in efforts to transform the care of 800,000 orphans there, 95 percent of whom are girls.
• A serial entrepreneur who has worked to revitalize Detroit’s economy by leading a business incubator to help new businesses grow.
• An Oregon woman who fights a top killer of children in developing nations by producing and distributing low-cost, safe, fuel-efficient cookstoves in Latin America.
• A woman in Washington, D.C., who is working to ease the transitions of thousands of African immigrants and refugees.
• A Santa Fe, N.M., architect challenging the building sector – perhaps the largest contributor of greenhouse gases – to improve energy efficiency and reduce emissions.
The winners will receive $100,000 each “for using their experience and passion to make an extraordinary impact on some of society’s biggest challenges,” according to this news release.
This is a significant prize. I wonder if the prize funds are reinvested in their efforts. I’m sure they are. You really have your fingers on the pulse of some wonderful initiatives and stories. Are you familiar with kiva.org?
I wasn’t familiar with kiva.org until you mentioned it. For most small businesses, credit availability is a critical component for growth (or survival). Looks like this organization is providing an important service.
It is so exciting when we connect our passions with helping others in one way or another. I think that this is the thing that can set us on fire the most!
I agree. It may take time and self discovery to determine the best way to make that connection, but it’s well worth the effort.