To make positive change happen in society, it requires highly committed, passionate and skilled people to find the necessary solutions to key problems and challenges. One South African social entrepreneur, Carrie Leaver, and the founder of Social Agents Impact Consulting, is now on a mission to help other social entrepreneurs to realize their goals in society.
LoA chatted to Carrie Leaver this month to find out about her new social business venture.
What does your company do?
As a social impact consultant, I guide strategic compassion for businesses, family trusts, NGOs and the public sector considering the assets available, whether it be capital, materials/resources, property, time and/or skills. Consulting services include thorough research and report delivery, innovative impact strategy design and facilitation, project management and relevant monitoring and evaluation methods. Social Agents guides relevant and South African suited impact initiatives. I'm an advocate for social entrepreneurship and host events and workshops to amplify the influence of those who want to contribute something positive to South Africa. Profits generated through Social Agents are invested into supporting (social) entrepreneurs in isolated and under-resourced parts of Cape Town (urban and rural) through monthly workshops, pop-up events and access to resources and networks.
"With privilege comes responsibility. The forever growing gap between the haves and have-nots is extremely daunting and I dream of doing what I can to narrow that space."
What inspired you to start your company?
With privilege comes responsibility. The forever growing gap between the haves and have-nots is extremely daunting and I dream of doing what I can to narrow that space. I have always had a deep, innate drive to do what I can to make South Africa a better place through one act of kindness at a time. I have come to realize that there are so many who are in a position to 'give-back' but do not know how or where to go to do something good with what they have to offer. And there's this issue of time. We never have enough time to follow through on the great ideas we may have. I have been inspired by the need of those in a position of privilege (whatever that may look like) to mobilize themselves and contribute to African solutions to issues we're faced with everyday.
Why should anyone use your service or product?
My passion for implementing innovative, relevant and sustainable impact initiatives is the key to my work being a success. I have a strong network of like-minded entrepreneurs, professionals and organizations that I collaborate with to amplify social impact. My qualifications and work experience (in both the education sector and the NGO space) have equipped me with a thorough understanding of what effective social impact requires. I am thorough in my work. No detail is ever missed and no email is ever unanswered. I invest greatly in my network and working relationships, as I know that we cannot drive impact work alone.
"My passion for implementing innovative, relevant and sustainable impact initiatives is the key to my work being a success."
Tell us a little about your team
At the moment, my team is just me. I owe much gratitude to my website developer, Gareth of Spotkolor Design, as he has proven to be a supportive and attentive mentor.
Share a little about your entrepreneurial journey. And, do you come from an entrepreneurial background?
For a long time, 'entrepreneur' was not a term I resonated with. I come from a background of high school teaching and my parents were business owners in the hospitality industry. My natural urge to contribute positively to South Africa was never identified as an entrepreneurial one until recently, when I discovered that social entrepreneurship is a thriving movement, globally and in South Africa. My entrepreneurial aspects exist in my 'just do it' attitude (I do not waste time if I can help it), my ability to connect and build relationships, my intuition and my determination to keep going.
What are your future plans and aspirations for your company?
My plans include connecting professionals and entrepreneurs across a segregated Cape Town through various networking events. I plan to contribute to the development of entrepreneurs in four selected isolated communities of Cape Town (rural and urban) in a drive to eliminate poverty and government dependency. The biggest plans will see the opening of a co-working space in the southern suburbs of Cape Town which will function as an inclusive and progressive hub for (social) entrepreneurs.
"Do your homework and plan your startup journey in bite sizes"
What gives you the most satisfaction being an entrepreneur?
Having the energy and the drive to be better, to learn and to contribute to change. And also, not being afraid to fail.
What's the biggest piece of advice you can give to other women looking to start-up?
Do your homework and plan your startup journey in bite sizes; many small steps keep one motivated. Talk to strangers and connect; the true magic happens in the connections you make with others. Write things down; ideas, dates, deadlines, everything! We need to keep organized and cannot afford to forget a thing.
Contact or follow Social Agents Impact Consulting
Why LoA loves it….
Carrie Leaver is one of life’s ‘doers’, committed to making a difference and being an inspiration to so many others who would like to make an impact in society. With her new social entrepreneurship venture, she is harnessing her years’ of experience and networks to assist other social entrepreneurs in South Africa to help them achieve their goals in communities most in need. --- Melanie Hawken, founder and editor-in-chief of Lionesses of Africa