Cascade Alliance

Five Headline Friday (5/25/18)

Happy Friday and Memorial Day Weekend.  Here are your Five Headlines for the week, we hope you find them informative, inspiring and useful.

This week we’ve come across: a new Social Enterprise directory, designed to raise awareness and connections between entities involved in social enterprise; hoteliers and mattress recycling, Ikea is going full circular, innovations in helping incarcerated people succeed, and more investing in affordable housing by the health-focused entities.

image from: http://collectiveimpactforum.org/resources/collective-impact-shared-resources

This article describes the need and benefits of raising the visibility of social enterprise businesses- profit and non-profit- to measure their contributions to society and the economy.  Social entrepreneurs also need a way to collectively gain more leverage and voice.  Weaver’s Social Enterprise Directory, launched in April by Rasheda Weaver at Vermont University, facilitates collaboration between social enterprises, policymakers, investors and legal firms.  Legislation and other efforts to promote social enterprise are described.

Responsible mattress recycling for hoteliers 

Hotels are an important driver of the mattress economy, as they replace their mattresses frequently, anywhere from 3-8 years for most quality hotels.  This article gives advice for hotels on ways to responsibly pre-cycle, reuse and recycle mattresses.  It’s important that hoteliers require mattress recyclers to provide an audit trail indicating chain of custody to demonstrate compliance with environmental practices.  Cascade Alliance members- Mustard Seed, Saint Vincent de Pauls, and UTEC, have recycling contracts with several hotels.

How the circular economy is fueling sustainable growth at Ikea

Ikea is shifting their business model, aiming to go from sustainability to “total circularity”, while maintaining ambitious sales growth goals. They are “restructuring their supply chain, product design processes and the way they approach customers”. It’s notable that Ikea recognizes opportunities to work with other organizations to build up the infrastructure to enable take-back schemes for reuse, repair, recycling of their products.

How social entrepreneurs are tackling the criminal justice system

Inspiring article about innovations making an impact on recidivism, employment and opportunities for people who are or have been incarcerated.

Reinforcements: The New Muscle Swinging Behind Affordable Housing

Image result for affordable housing

Photo: Michelle C. Torres-Grant Photography

Another health-based entity, Kaiser Permanente is joining in impact investing efforts that recognizes the linkage between housing and heath.  Their initiative is a $200 million to address homelessness and the housing crisis, with an initial focus on increasing access to supportive housing and preventing people from becoming homeless.

This article provides great background information on this developing path in heath-focused philanthropies and investors.