Gawad Kalinga (GK) successfully kicked off its 3rd Social Business Summit on January 15 to 17, which also marks their 13th anniversary, at the Hub for Social Entrepreneur, GK Enchanted Farm. The 3-day summit, or probably the whole lives of the GK community, lived by the theme, “The Business of Kindness: Doing good makes good business sense” in order to, as per the words of the Foundling Father of GK Tony “Tito Tony” Meloto, build together a “kinder, fairer, safer, and happier world.”
The summit was then spearheaded by notable social entrepreneurs in and out of the country to empower aspiring and successful social entrepreneurs alike. To name some are Dylan Wilk of Human Heart Nature, Paul Soo of Berjaya Group Philippines, Reese Fernandez-Ruiz of Rags 2 Riches, Shanon Khadka of Bayani Brew, Karrie Ilagan of Microsoft Philippines, Fabien Courteille of Plush and Play, and Senator Bam Aquino.
The business of kindness
Different empowering discussions on the effective ways on how to build global social enterprises; the importance of establishing business and love together; turning corporate social responsibility to corporate social investment; infusing compassion in competence; social business and innovation for sustainable public health; a background of the social enterprise landscape in the Philippines; and how to hopefully help end poverty by 2024 by establishing good business and relationships with your people dominated the eventful summit.
Among the talks given in the summit, we must say that Dylan Wilk of Human Heart Nature strikes us the most. Wilk lived a glamorous life back with such luxurious cars until his feet brought him to the land of Gawad Kalinga and plunged him into social entrepreneurship. He then established Human Heart Nature, and what happened next will surprise you. He implements a moral wage of about PHP 750 a day to his people rather than the minimum wage law. The British entrepreneur also believes in the goodness of the Filipino people, hence his no firing policy.
Tribute to the golden hearts
Apart from the inspiring talks, who would have known that the amazing people of GK know how to throw some good entertainment in the crowd?
As the guru he is, the birthday boy Tito Tony, hosted a Love Forum by the Bamboo Villa late at night where the relationship between love and business meant everything. The importance of integrating love between poverty and supremacy and choosing “the one” for you leads you to the right path and purpose in your life, which makes love the great equalizer above all and when love and business meet.
In between the food for the soul, cocktail nights were dedicated to the social entrepreneurs and volunteers from all walks of life, and to the French who are wholeheartedly committed to the GK Community.
And here’s probably the most engaging of them all: a fashion show in collaboration with Ditta Sandico and Philip Torres where the GK social entrepreneurs and volunteers entertainingly graced the ramp. Who bested them were the heroic nanays of the communities who have been a great contribution to the community’s success.
Sounds cool, right? What is more, GK organizes intensive Start-up Business Camps in the farm for two consecutive weekends that will run through March. Next year, GK shall host its 4th Social Business Summit in January.