April 28, 2014 – Digital Journal

University of San Diego (USD) announces the finalists for the Social Innovation Challenge, a multi-school innovation effort lead by USD’s Center for Peace and Commerce (CPC) http://www.sandiego.edu/cpc/. Now in its 4th year of leading social innovation, the CPC will award $70,000 to social innovators on May 2 at a live Awards Ceremony, sponsored by US Bank.

Over 115 ideas were submitted, and judges have now narrowed the pool to 16 with innovations ranging from a violence-tracking web app to a bioinspired water capturing system to a solar umbrella charging station. The 16 finalists’ proposals can be viewed in full at http://www.sandiegosocialinnovation.org – summaries are listed below.

“Social Innovation is the business of empowering emerging leaders to solve real world problems faced by vulnerable populations,” said Nadia Auch, who directs the Social Innovation Challenge. “The outcome for society at large is job creation, safer streets, better-educated children, optimal use of resources and best of all, human and social capital reinvestment,” said Dr. Stephen Conroy, USD School of Business Administration professor and faculty director of the Center for Peace and Commerce.

A generous donation from the Moxie Foundation made it possible to expand the Social Innovation Challenge this year to include student innovators from Point Loma Nazarene University, San Diego City College, San Diego State University, and University of California, San Diego. The five schools will continue the battle of the best social business models as local leaders such as Jenny Craig, Kapil Sharma from Tata North America, and Peg Ross from Project Concern International (PCI) weigh in on the most viable, impactful solutions.

On Friday May 2, the innovators will learn who’ll take home the $70, 0000 in cash for their business. Finalist will provide a speed pitch of 90 seconds to compete in the “Audience Choice Award” sponsored Social Global Mobile, LLC. The winners will be determined in real-time by the audience as they cast their vote using their mobile device.

Student Teresa Smith, PhD, founder of Dreams for Change will switch places and serve as a judge this year. As last year’s Verizon Environmental Prize winner, she took home $10,000 in cash to bolster Safe Parking, a non-profit that offers a safe parking environment for the transitional homeless living in their cars.

“The Social Innovation Challenge is one-of-a-kind platform for entrepreneurs to jumpstart their world-changing ideas,” said Teresa Smith. “As a winner last year, I was able to impact the quality of lives for more than 500 people who needed a safe, warm, connected place to sleep so they could continue to get to their jobs, parent their children and stave off a permanent homelessness status.”

Smith is a recognized thought leader and advocate of non-standard ways to solve one of San Diego’s and, indeed the nation’s, largest challenges, homelessness.

Awards Overview: May 2, 2014

“Spotlight Speaker:” Emily Moberly, Founder of Traveling Stories, an organization “outsmarting poverty one book at a time,” will speak about the power of social good as a business. The social entrepreneur will illustrate her “crowd leadership” style and talk about the inspiration behind building “Traveling Stories” as a social franchise. http://travelingstories.org

The 4th Annual Social Innovation Challenge
Date: Friday, May 2, 2014
Time: 4:00 – 6:30
Location: Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace & Justice (followed by a reception in the Garden of the Sea)
Open to the Public, register here – http://www.sandiego.edu/cpc/.

Sponsors: Moxie Foundation, Verizon Foundation, WOM.me. and Alberto Coppel, John and Nancy Jo Cappetta, the Price Foundation, the Purcell McNamara Foundation, the USD Alcala Alumni Fund, Outerwall/ecoATM, Pacific Western Bank, US Bank, Social Global Mobile, LLC, Qualcomm Ventures

Final-Round Judges: Jenny Craig, Jenny Craig Inc.; Siyamak Khorrami, Founder and President, SkyRiver IT; Ned McMahon, Founder and CEO, Primo Wind Inc.; Keith Muhart, Director of Marketing, Qualcomm Ventures; Peg Ross, Vice President, Project Concern International (PCI); Kapil Sharma, Senior Managing Director, Tata North America; Teresa Smith, 2012 and 2013 Social Innovation Challenge Awardee and Founder of Dreams for Change; Necla Tschirgi, Professor of Practice, Human Security and Peacebuilding, Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies, USD; Michelle Weinger, Executive Advisory Board, Center for Peace and Commerce; Peter Zahn, President, Moxie Foundation.

Community Support: CommNexus, Connect, San Diego Social Venture Partners, Indiegogo,
University Partners: Point Loma Nazarene University, San Diego City College, San Diego State University, and University of California, San Diego.

16 Finalists Summary:

University of San Diego Track:
Rise Above is a program where USD students mentor and tutor at-risk youth in neighboring public schools in order to prevent delinquent students from dropping out of school and subsequently becoming gang members.

Fundpal is a solution whereby non-profits can accept donations via twitter and their followers/donors can send these donations via a simple retweet, creating an inherently viral social donation platform.

G.R.O.W.I.N.G. is a dynamic job placement program, which offers culturally appropriate opportunities to refugee farmers and entrepreneurs from Burma living in San Diego who may otherwise be unemployable in the region.

Back to Work is a vigorous campaign that is out to encourage and give homeless San Diegans the confidence they need to get back into the workforce and reestablish a sense of belonging in our community by providing services and tools.

Pacific CleanTech is a veteran owned and operated sustainable solutions company with a mission is to create jobs for veterans through assisting businesses in becoming more environmentally sustainable.

Green Room is an out-of-the-box learning environment that provides underprivileged students with the advanced resources needed to develop green technology projects in their neighborhood by inspiring students to explore STEM fields.

“memoria” is a secure web-application specially designed for collecting data on victims of violence and human abuses in Mexico to help victims document crime and hold authorities accountable.

Rice Pollution Solution reduces the heavy metals in rice, lowers the potential of cancer, and improve food quality throughout the world by implementing a retention pool on the top terrace of rice paddies.

San Diego Track:
The Moxie Foundation is sponsoring the San Diego Track in the 2014 SIC. Their contribution allows students from other universities in San Diego including Point Loma Nazarene University, San Diego City College, San Diego State University, and University of California, San Diego to compete in the USD Social Innovation Challenge for the “Moxie Prize” money, totaling $20,000.

VENA is a low-cost, scalable, zero energy water harvester for developing regions lacking access to potable water. A biomimetic design modeled after the cacti, it uses differences between below and above ground temperatures to trigger a dew point.

Solar Umbrella is a standalone patio umbrella that uses solar panels to provide 110V wall outlets and USB charging ports wherever there is sun, despite the absence of the grid.

ProductBio is a new procurement tool that uses data and science to simplify finding sustainable products. This solution is ideal for rule-based buyers, such as governments and cities. The program is projected to save roughly 8,000 work hours which could translate into as much as $400,000 a year.

Fiji Kindergarten creates a sustainable low-cost and easy-to-build kindergarten from two 20-foot by 8-foot shipping containers for 20-30 children that can be implemented worldwide and make education more accessible.

Art without a Roof provides socially conscious people with apparel infused with creative designs from artists impacted by homelessness. Profits are cycled back to fund education and art therapy for the youth without a roof.

Pullee Mobile Donations creates a mobile system to enable anyone to donate money directly to a person in need via a mobile device and with a guarantee that the donation will only be spent on essentials (food/water).

W.E. Do Good is developing an extremely affordable, portable, and durable mechanical thresher to improve the difficult, time-consuming, unsanitary, and resource-inefficient harvesting of teff for farmers in Ethiopia.

One Village Philippines strives to solve issues impacting low-income communities in the Philippines, including a need for lighting and safety in living structures.

About USD’s Center for Peace and Commerce (CPC)
The Center for Peace and Commerce (CPC) is a collaborative effort between the School of Business Administration and the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies to prepare new generations to develop and exercise innovative approaches for achieving the 4 Ps– people, profit, planet and peace.

The CPC contributes to creating new enterprise paradigms and solutions, that foster peace-building and poverty alleviation, through courses, scholarship, enterprise development, active engagement with multiple stakeholders and the promotion of good governance. http://www.sandiegosocialinnovation.org/about/center-peace-and-commerce

About the Safe Parking Program
The Safe Parking Program, a 501 C(3), provides a safe parking environment and supportive services for transitional homeless living in their vehicles for overnight stays. Family advocates construct an action plan with each participant placing emphasis on permanent housing solutions, employment, training, emergency supports and asset stabilization and building. The Safe Parking Program operates 7 nights a week, 365 days a year starting at 6:00 pm. Program volunteers and staff are always on Safe Parking sites. For more information about the program visit http://www.dreamsforchange.org.

About the Moxie Foundation
Vision: A society of economically independent, informed individuals who engage in their community and enhance the value of community.

Mission Statement:The Moxie Foundation is dedicated to enriching and empowering individuals and communities by advancing educational achievement and entrepreneurial success, personal health, and the environment. https://www.moxiefoundation.org/about-us/mission-vision/

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