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Social Entrepreneurship on the Rise in Vietnam

"In Vietnam, the growth of social entrepreneurship has been aided by the growth of micro-credit institutions and by the government adopting freer market policies."

Currently, this trend is driven by NGOs, with very limited public sector investment:

"The Spark Centre (Center for Social Entrepreneurship Development) helps social entrepreneurs replicate their local solutions in different sectors like agriculture, emergency transportation, and market access… The Centre for Social Initiatives Promotion (CSIP) provides grants to two levels of social entrepreneurs: those who are just starting out and have promising ideas for social entrepreneurship and those social entrepreneurs who have already successfully piloted programs. The CSIP is also tying up with foreign organizations including the British Council and Social Enterprise London to raise awareness, support start-ups, implement mentoring programs, and providing networking
opportunities to social enterprises.

Here are some example enterprises:

MotoMedics "won the CSIP grant in 2010 for developing an innovative model for first response treatment to traffic accident victims in Hanoi, is now working on scaling up and expanding the model."
Ecolife "established a community-based ecotourism model in the Red River Delta."
Youth Entrepreneurs and Sustainability Education (YESE) Program "was launched by GreenoCom and CSIP to foster sustainability and social entrepreneurial spirit amongst the youth."

Implications from SFG:
"Vietnam is currently witnessing a rise in social entrepreneurship. This trend, if given proper impetus, has the potential to impact impoverished communities in the country as it offers a means towards economic development…"

"Although these NGOs have support from foreign and local
organizations, potential impediments to the growth of the trend could include lack of government support and funding. Hence, there is potential for these and other NGOs to partner with both the
public and private sector in order to expand their reach and to start more initiatives that would provide support to social entrepreneurs.
There is scope for intervention in providing start-up social entrepreneurs with support through fundraising and capacity development. The Foundation can also partner with business schools
and colleges to offer subsidized, structured courses in entrepreneurship. It can also start „incubators‟ to provide support to budding start-ups.

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