20 Social Enterprises Making Positive Impact for Education


Positive Impact for Education

Education empowers children, teens, and adults to create a better world for themselves and others. This post contains social enterprises, nonprofits, and like-minded organizations supporting education in the US and around the globe.

“I believe the children are our future.”

A beautiful line sung by Whitney Houston in the song Greatest Love of All, pointing out the need to nurture the next generation.

The youth are filled with new ideas and new ways of living. Their dreams for the future sometimes stretch beyond what older generations can see, and they’ll need support to make strides in the world. Some of this support comes from organizations, including social enterprises, combining resources to give youth the best chance they can have.

Whether it’s formal education, job training, or emotional intelligence, support is significant for the youth to bloom. Who knows what the next generation will bring into play?

To celebrate this year’s Back to School season, here are social enterprises and adjacent organizations that support the education of youth:

1. First Book

“First Book is dedicated to breaking down the barriers to educational equity by increasing access to evidence-based best practices, books, and resources in underserved communities.”

2. SuitUp

“We equip students for life beyond the classroom by partnering with schools/youth organizations and businesses to develop, organize, and implement engaging educational competitions in communities across the U.S. and beyond.”

3. SEAT Center

Mission: “To provide transformative educational and workforce experiences that create a sense of purpose and hope in our communities and connect business to real time solutions.”

4. eSmart Recycling

“eSmart Recycling combines environmental sustainability and social impact metrics which results in a holistic approach to offsetting carbon emissions through recycling technology, both at a corporate and residential level, and the empowerment of local communities by enabling access to technology and education.”

5. Ohio Afterschool Network

“OAN is a statewide organization that brings national evidence-based best practices and resources to afterschool and summer learning professionals across Ohio.”

6. Harlem Children’s Zone

“At Harlem Children’s Zone, we’re breaking the cycle of intergenerational poverty by creating life-altering opportunities throughout our neighborhood so children, families, and our community can thrive in all areas of life”

7. Positively Caviar

“Positively Caviar, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that uses optimism to build resilience and disrupt youth mental health stigmas in underserved communities.”


“TRIBE is reimagining secondary education and workforce development in Africa through entrepreneurship.”

9. Just Feel

“Through one to three years of partnership, JUST FEEL join hands with schools to develop a Compassionate School Culture to enhance students’ emotional well-being.”

10. Learning Squared Liberia

“Learning Squared Liberia is dedicated to improving education for the children of Liberia and developing the capacity of individuals and communities to build a healthy and thriving democracy.”

11. MALALA Fund

“Malala Fund is working for a world where every girl can learn and lead.”

12. Empowered by Vee

“An academic empowerment organisation bridging the gap between student ability and self-belief.”

“Let the children’s laughter remind us how we used to be.”

This sentence wraps up the first set of lines in Greatest Love of All, encouraging adults to step back into the wonder and fearlessness (or optimistic naivety) that everyone’s born with. You don’t have to lose your child-like curiosity, and can find it again if it got buried. The world we live in today has opportunities for people to be more flexible in what they pursue.

Haven’t you noticed? The 40 year olds today don’t look like the 40 year olds from decades ago. In fact, the internet jokes about how people aged faster back then. That’s not the only difference.

It makes sense that generations are setting new standards for their age since there are different resources and expectations. Not everyone gets married in their early 20s. Some people graduate high school in their 60s.

At this point, each generation is budding in their own way and redefining what it means to be the age they’re currently at.

Below are social enterprises and adjacent organizations that offer support for our budding adults pursuing education:

13. SkillUp

“SkillUp helps workers discover in-demand career pathways and training options in their region.”

14. Generation Conscious

“Built on compassion for the planet and each other, we collaborate with college campuses across the country to provide students with hygiene security.”

15. Colorwave

“Colorwave is helping to reduce income, wealth, and social capital gaps in America’s innovation economy by connecting underrepresented professionals to meaningful career opportunities across the venture-backed ecosystem.”

16. Housing Hope

“Education & Employment Department has many elements that work independently and congruently. Our common goal: We meet our folks where they are and offer a tailored, person-centered approach to their vocational success.”

17. HopeWorks

“We create pathways to self-sufficiency through social enterprises that provide hope, empowerment, education and job training.”

  • A Housing Hope affiliate

18. Bright Endeavors

“At Bright Endeavors, young moms engage in a comprehensive, paid job training program where they gain career skills, a professional network, and a set of tools to help them thrive in their chosen profession, all while learning what is required to power a manufacturing and distribution operation for our growing home fragrance brand.”

  • Apply for job training at the bottom of the site

19. Future Ready Iowa

“Future Ready Iowa connects Iowans to the education and training required for good paying jobs and careers to improve people’s lives. The Future Ready Iowa goal is to have 70 percent of Iowans with education and training beyond high school by 2025.”

20. Na’maal

“Na’amal partners with leading organisations to support refugees and other underrepresented communities through skills training, mentorship and remote work placement opportunities.”

Positive Impact for Education
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