Social Change Nation's Podcast | Make a dollar AND a difference

This Podcast is all about the best ways to FUND YOUR SOCIAL VENTURE.  Listen in to  gain  expert insight and learn the best practices to raise capital from legitimate investors from our guest Tristina Sinopoli.  Tristina works with the SVX (Social Venture Connection) which is a division of the MaRS Center for Impact Investing in Toronto, Canada.   There are 23 ventures on the SVX platform that are actively raising $139 million in capital.  SVX is a local, impact-first platform connecting social ventures, impact funds and impact investors to catalyze new debt and equity investment capital for local ventures that have demonstrable social and/or environmental impact, including not-for-profits, co-operatives and for-profit corporations.  Tristina addresses many of the issues specific to funding startups in the social venture space.  She also explains the idea of MISSION ALIGNMENT and why it so vital to getting the right funding from the right investors from your social venture.  For anyone concerned with how to fund their social venture this interview with Tristina is a MUST LISTEN!


Show Notes:

v  What is the best book you ever read?

§  Buyology by Martin Lindstrom

v  What tool are you using to grow SVX?

§  Salesforce—online CRM and Cloud Computing Platform

v  What is the best piece of advice you have ever received?

§  Say no to things.

v  What is a social venture that we should all look up?

§  Oliberte—The worlds first certified free trade shoe manufacturer.

§  Goal of creating a million jobs in Africa.

v  What is the first thing everyone can start doing to change the world.

§  Be nice to one another.

v  Contact:

§  Svx Website


§  Twitter: @tmsinopoli

Direct download: Tristina_Sinopoli.mp3
Category:Entrepreneurship -- posted at: 5:00am CST

In 2012, Rose Broome walked buy a homeless woman sleeping on a San Francisco street on a winter night and wanted to do something to help.  She thought, “in a world where I can take out my phone and order food or get a taxi with the push of a button, why can’t I use my phone to help this person?”  Rose decided to create a solution to that problem with her tech company HandUP.  The company leverages technology and the power of human relationships to fight urban poverty by connecting the homeless with those who want to help through crowdfunding.  HandUP is different because it creates a connection between donors and those in need by allowing direct giving.


Rose discusses her journey with HandUP and all the things that went into creating the company.  She credits much of  HandUP success to being a graduate of Tumml Incubator and stresses the importance of being involved with a startup accelerator, incubator, or other community.  She also dives into her decision to be a public benefit corporation and gives great advice to new startup founders trying to decide on a legal structure.  Rose tells numerous stories of how direct donations through HandUP changed the lives of people living on the streets including the story of a man who is now in permanent housing after being homeless for 25 years.


Show Notes:


  • What is a book we should all start reading?

  • What tech tool are you using to grow HandUP?:

    • Assana--task management that works in conjunction with google drive

  • What is the best piece of advice you have ever received:

    • When you feel like you have a lot going on and have many decisions to make, focus on the basics.

  • What is one thing we can all be doing to start changing the world?

    • Make a commitment to yourself to do one small thing to improve a cause or issue you care about.

  • Contact:

Direct download: Rose_Broome_Hand_Up.mp3
Category:Entrepreneurship -- posted at: 5:00am CST

Voices of Social Change crosses the pond to connect with Richard Morris of The Giving Machine in the UK.  The Giving Machine is a non-profit social enterprise that help shoppers generate free cash donations for the causes they want to support, every time they shop online.  The Giving Machine has over 80,000 users that have made over 1.2 million free donations and uses an affiliate marketing sales commission model to generate those donations.  The idea for The Giving Machine was created in 2006 by four Dads in Hertfordshire, England who wanted to use their unique business and technical schools to benefit schools and charities.

Richard discusses his decision to leave his successful career launching tech startups to create a way to encourage giving by making it free.  He gives great details about the process of deciding on a model, legal structure, and initial cash funding for The Giving Machine.  Richard also talks about how the social purpose has evolved over time to become something bigger than sales referrals generating free donations. Richard shares some HUGE ideas on the economic force of giving and how it is being used to empower commerce.


As you listen to Richard's story of a homegrown venture transforming into to a national giving movement, ask yourself: “WHAT WILL MY MOVEMENT BE?”


Show Notes:


  • What Recommendations for someone who wants to start delegating operational activities but currently lacks the funds to do so?

    • Ask family and friends if they would use your product/service and if they would like to get involved.  

    • If you cannot pay them much, make sure you let them be flexible in the when, where and how much they work.

  • What is one strategy that is much effective in clarifying a vision:

    • You have to live it.  You have to share it with other people and let it infuse.  Do not focus on the individual roles of people you are bringing on, but talk with them more holistically about the organization's vision.  

    • When people are correcting you on your own vision, then you are clarifying vision in the right way and it is bigger than yourself.

  • Tell us about your book Givenomics:

    • The impact of giving in a commercial model can change the way consumers interact with business, the way businesses achieve social good, and the way charities and causes and can access more support.

    • “Money is like Manure, if it sits in huge piles it does not do much, but if you can spread it around it can do more good.”

  • Waht is the first thing we can all start doing to change the world?

    • Do small things to be more giving.

    • Enjoy what you do and do it with passion

  • Contact

Direct download: Richard_Morris_Giving_Maching.mp3
Category:Entrepreneurship -- posted at: 5:00am CST

Listen this week to hear how Johnny Price flips the lending industry on its head as the Senior Director at Kiva Zip.  Kiva Zip is a microfinancing nonprofit organization that makes 0% interest loans for small businesses doing good things.  Kiva Zip is a branch of Kiva which was started in 2005 and has grown to lend over half a billion dollars to a million borrowers from a million lenders.  Kiva Zip was launched in 2011, and is different from Kiva in that it focuses on connecting lenders and borrowers by allowing direct loans to borrowers.  Johnny dives deep into the Kiva Zip model and shares about creating loans that benefit lenders in more ways than just money.  The direct lending approach of Kiva Zip encourages lenders to become customers and advocates for the small business while also expanding the access to loans for other worthy small businesses.  Kiva Zip does not use traditional financial metrics to determine if businesses qualify for a loan, but grants loans based on various  social performance factors.  Kiva Zip goes further to disrupt the industry as they do not charge interests on loans that would typically be considered high risk and require a higher interest rate.  Infact, 23 percent of the O% interest loans are given to companies that are less than a year old.  Johnny talks about his transition to Kiva after spending years doing strategic management in London.  He wanted to do something where he felt like he was making an impact, and found that Kiva was a great organization to use capital to give others the opportunity to make there own social change.


Microfinance, social underwriting, financial literacy and other ideas discussed by Johnny in this interview will be recurring themes throughout our podcasts as we feel they are all VITAL to the social change movement!  

Show Notes


  • What is a book we should all read?

  • What is the best piece of advice you have ever recieved?

    • Don’t focus on focus too much on the large scale, focus on producing for the next phase.

  • What is your favorite tech tool to use to grow Kiva Zip?

    • Ez Texting for SMS messaging to communicate easily with borrowers and lenders.

  • What is the first thing we can all start doing to change the world?

    • Participate in social change instead of just reading or learning about it.

Direct download: Johnny_Price_of_Kiva_Zip.mp3
Category:Entrepreneurship -- posted at: 5:00am CST

Build yourself while building your business.  This is the message of Megan McDonough of OCEAN Accelerator; the nation's first and only independent faith based high tech business accelerator. Megan shares a different story of social entrepreneurship.  This story does not require putting your personal, family, and spiritual life on hold in order to start a social venture, but instead encourages growth in these areas as you strive to grow your business.  OCEAN is dedicated to providing resources that allow founders to develop a business while still fostering growth in the other important things in their life.  As part of the program, entrepreneurs receive a $20,000 uncapped convertible note, financial support for finding a residence, a branding package, access to dedicated office space, a rich customer network, and two mentors with specific skills matched to the needs of your venture.  OCEAN also cultivates small group sessions and Bible studies focused on growing entrepreneurs into strong followers of Christ.


Megan gives an eye-opening testimony about how faith has played such a vital role in her personal business career as well as the founding of the company.  She also shares how believers do not have to go into the ministry or mission fields to impact others. We can minister to those around us through how we run our business, how we treat people, and how we conduct our daily lives.  Whether or not you adhere to a religion or belief system, social entrepreneurs have a higher calling to create something that is more than just a business. As a social entrepenuer you can impact lives for the better and create a legacy of social change. But Remember...


You got to have FAITH!  




  • The best piece of advice:

    • Time is Short.

  • What is a book you think all of us should read:

  • What Tech Tool are you using to helping grow OCEAN?

    • Mail Chimp

      • Email Marketing

    • FundaCity

      • Connecting startups and investors to grow the next big thing

    • F6S

      • Where founders grow together

    • Batterii

      • Cross-functional teams use Batterii to share and build knowledge securely and effectively, building creative capabilities to produce innovative breakthroughs again and again.

  • What is the first thing that we can all start doing to change the world?

    • Look at what you love to do, start doing it, and see how it can be used for the greater good.

    • Do not be afraid of challenge.

  • Tim Mentzner Video


  • Contact:

Direct download: Megan_of_OCEAN_Accelerator.mp3
Category:Entrepreneurship -- posted at: 5:00am CST

Ari Raz feeds off his passion for food and nutrition as he runs his social venture that feeds those in need.  Pure Joy Foods was founding in February and is dedicated to delivering high quality nutritious food to as many young children as possible, whether or not their families can afford it.  As of now, they primarily focus on premium organic baby food, but hope to grow into providing different food products as their customers mature.  Azi sheds light on the nutritional issues facing children in the United States.  22 million children are using food stamps, and are not being exposed to nourishing organic foods that are harder to access in lower income areas.  Pure Joy Foods partners with the non profit organization Martha’s Table by providing them with 1 nutritious food item for every 5 items sold.  This interview is the third in our series of interviews featuring fellows of Halcyon Incubator social venture accelerator of of Washington, D.C.  We focus in on Azi’s plan to utilize the the Incubator resources to help his company be more professional, communicate better, and build its social mission. He also shares his desire to see the need for new structure and components put into place in order to accommodate those in the social entrepreneurship movement.



  • What is the best book you have ever read?

  • What is the Best piece of advice you have ever received?

    • “Try to become the least important person in your organization.”  

    • A successful organization is one that does not always need you there, but needs you pushing it forward onto the next stage.

  • What is the favorite tool you are using to grow Pure Joy Food?

    • Tasting parties for parents to help generate interest and gain subscribers.

  • What is a social venture to watch besides Pure Joy:

  • What is the fiirst thing everyone can do to start changing the world?

    • Believe that you have the power to make a difference!

  • Contact:

Direct download: Ari_Raz_Disrupts_the_Baby_Food_Industry.mp3
Category:Entrepreneurship -- posted at: 5:00am CST