Social Enterprise Works. Let’s Make Sure it Counts! – Carla Javits, REDF President and CEO

Increasingly, employers are reaching out to non-traditional sources of talent to fill their job openings. Given this receptivity, now is the ideal moment to create even more opportunities for people who are striving to join the workforce. Across the U.S., people are overcoming what have previously been called insurmountable hurdles to employment.

Social enterprise is helping to drive this trend. Social enterprises are unique businesses with a clear social mission: They take their profits and invest in helping people. Social enterprise provides both real, paying jobs and the services that help employees stabilize their lives, build their skills, and develop a work history. When they’re ready, social enterprises help them find lasting, competitive jobs.

There is, however, one piece of information missing: We don’t know how many employment social enterprise businesses there are in the U.S. But now we are aiming to find out. With this data, we will be better able to accelerate the growth of these opportunities and help many more Americans go to work.

We need your help identifying the enterprises across the U.S. that have chosen to focus on employing and training people who are overcoming challenges, like incarceration or homelessness, that have limited their ability to get and keep jobs in the past. Businesses that connect people to the services and support they need to succeed.

REDF just launched a nationwide census and we need your help to make it as comprehensive as possible.

We are casting a wide net to capture as many of these employers and businesses as we can in our census. Whether you sell products or services, are for-profit or nonprofit, think of yourself as a social enterprise, a B Corporation, or something else—as long as you are a revenue-generating business that hires and supports people with significant barriers to work in a transitional job, we want to hear from you.

By obtaining a baseline understanding of the size and scale of the employment social enterprise sector in the U.S., we will have a powerful tool to network, galvanize, inform, and resource this growing community of employers—with the ultimate goal of employing many more people.

Please take 15 minutes to respond to the census by Friday, September 29, and share it with everyone in your network who might be interested. We know social enterprise works. It’s our job to make sure it counts.