Social Venture Innovation Challenge Winners are Changing the Landscape of What's Possible in New Hampshire
Our next generation of business leaders and innovators are jumpstarting their careers through the University of New Hampshire's Social Venture Innovation Challenge (SVIC), which asks participants to imagine creative new business solutions to the most pressing environmental and social challenges in our communities. As a collaboration between the Carsey School for Public Policy and the Paul College of Business and Economics, SVIC equips students with a wealth of knowledge, resources, and mentorship to make their business ideas a reality.
UNH and NHBSR have partnered to support these young business professionals in their endeavors, as we realize how important it is for us to train the next generation of sustainabiliy leaders. Juliana Good of Crescendo Inclusive Curriculums and Andrew DeMeo of Half-Acre Beekeeping will be attending NHBSR's Spring Conference on May 2, where they will develop relationships within the larger NHBSR community and explore ways to help make their social innovation ventures successful!
Juliana Good created Crescendo Inclusive Curriculums as a way to address the lack of representation of specials needs students in the performing arts communities. Very few youth with special needs are involved in music, theater, and arts because teachers do not have the resources, experience, or training to include all students in the classroom. By encouraging participation from all students and especially among a community that would greatly benefit from being involved in the arts, Crescendo Inclusive Curriculums seeks to sustain the arts in our public schools and for generations of young artists. Currently Juliana is building the
cross-sector partnerships and programmatic foundation to be able to launch a pilot for Crescendo Inclusive Curriculums in NH within the next year.
"I believe that being engaged in business is not just a question of profit. It's a questions of what your mission is and what you want to do to leave a mark on this world," Juliana earnestly and enthusiastically articulates, " I think that if you have the skills and resources to sustain a mission through a business, then that's a wonderful opportunity and one that I certainly am excited to be able to pursue."
Bees are dying off at alarming rates and collapses in their population will have catastrophic consequences on our agriculture and food supply. "Bees affect all of us," Andy DeMeo, Co-founder of Half-Acre Beekeeping stresses, "Pollinators play a very important role in our society, so it's important to not just appreciate and understand them, but to actively support them."
Half-Acre Beekeeping, which launched just this month, aims to make supporting local beekeeping accessible to anyone, while promoting a better, more ethical and environmentally friendly alternative to large-scale commercial honey production.
Half-Acre Beekeeping customers purchase hive shares or honey sourced from Half-Acre hives placed on local farms. The
bees themselves are bred from local populations and pollinate local crops in New Hampshire. By not transporting large colonies of bees from location to location (the predominant model of most commercial beekeepers), Half-Acre lessens the stress on the insects, minimizes the spread of diseases, and decreases their own carbon footprint.
"I feel that NHBSR is a natural fit for a business like Half-Acre," states Andrew, "While we of course want to run a commercially sustainable business, environmentalism is core to our mission. My partner and I want to be connected with similarly minded businesses and individuals. Sustainability is such a multifaceted issue and the more ways we can tackle it, from different business areas and places in society, the better. I'm excited to meet as many people as I can at the Spring Conference."
You can reach out to Julianna at (480) 335-8767 and Andy at (603) 845-9816. Be sure to introduce yourself at our Spring Conference on May 2 and give these young entrepreneurs a warm welcome to the NHBSR community.
Photo credit 1: Perry Smith Photo credit 2: Alexandra Allen Photo credit 3 & 4: Perry Smith Photography, Half-Acre Beekeeping