By Elissa Rose (Assistant Editor, Women 2.0)
Forbes has created their Impact 30, a list of social entrepreneurs, defined by Forbes as “people who use business to solve social issues.” They have chosen their 30 entrepreneurs, nine of whom are women, with a panel of diverse experts.
These are the people using business and non-profits to solve real world social problems in innovative ways. They give healthcare to freelancers, keep babies warm without electricity, provide affordable housing, and offering high value advice to promising businesses in low income areas. These are people who make a difference.
Women 2.0 excerpts the female social entrepreneurs for our readers:
Jane Chen (Founder, Embrace)
The “Thermpod” provides a lifesaving 4-6 hours of heat on a single 30-minute charge. Up next: a hot-water-powered product to warm newborns.
Sara Horowitz (Founder, Freelancer’s Union)
The Freelancers Union, which provides reasonably priced health insurance to the self-employed, has been financially self-sustaining since 2006.
Wendy Kopp (Founder, Teach For America)
Teach for America puts smart college seniors in some of the country’s worst high school classrooms. Wendy is expanding the global program, Teach for All, already in 22 countries.
Jacqueline Novogratz (Founder, Acumen Fund)
The Acumen Fund is patient: Entrepreneurs have up to 10 years to achieve financial sustainability.
Rebecca Onie (Founder, Health Leads)
Health Leads program’s 1,000 or so volunteers work with hospitals and clinics to help patients navigate language barriers and the bureaucratic jungle to get the services they need.
Over the past 13 years, Endeavor has expanded beyond Latin America; its entrepreneurs claim to have created 100,000 jobs and injected “billions of dollars” into local economies.
Beth Sirull (Founder, Pacific Community Ventures)
Small businesses in poor neighborhoods would grow faster with the right advice. Last year, the businesses PCV advised added about 3,000 jobs and paid $50M in wages to low-income areas.
Jill Vialet (Founder, PlayWorks)
Playworks remakes play time in 318 elementary schools, providing a full-time “coach” who organizes structured activities. Nearly 130,000 kids have access to a Playworks coach.
Editor’s note: Got a question for our guest blogger? Leave a message in the comments below.
About the guest blogger: Elissa Rose is Assistant Editor of Women 2.0. She co-founded Quillpill in 2008, a mobile story-writing platform that was written up in TechCrunch, Communication Arts and The New Yorker. She has worked as a content creator for virtual worlds, and as an Art Director for mobile gaming. She is the mother of an inquisitive six-year-old boy and lives in Oakland, CA. Elissa studied Philosophy and Physics at the University of Alabama. Follow her on Twitter at @elissarose.