Testimony by Greta Rose Carlson from Texas Lutheran University (TLU) Social Entrepreneurship Program 2016 Course
“It is really inspiring for me to know that there are business people out there that are not monetarily profit driven, and that value humanity. VOS’s true profits are seen not only in their bottom line, but in the way they offer the people around them fair opportunities for empowering themselves and those around them.
They provide things that everyone should have access to, like healthcare and education, while still maintaining a growing, thriving business. They also actually do what they say! Their transparent model and impressive international certifications really show how they are honest in their pursuit of success. These are things that should be in every business— respect for workers, access to resources, and opportunities to grow.
VOS proves to the entire business community that you do not have to trade profits for humanity. The ten percent of the bottom line that they give to their humanitarian efforts is able to go a long way. In development work, it is so common to see people in poverty given something— a meal, clothes, vaccines, etc. — all things that are important, but often from programs that are not sustainable.
By having humanitarian efforts built into their business model, VOS offers a sustainable way to provide for a community and empower that community to provide for itself. I would say that the model is not a hand out, or even a hand up, but a hand shake for a community getting the respect and opportunities that should be open to everyone.“
About the TLU Social Entrepreneurship Program
TLU’s Bachelor of Arts in Social Entrepreneurship is part of their business school but also partners with their math, history, theology and communications departments to create specialized areas of concentration in Nonprofit Leadership, Arts for Social Change, Mental Health Community Interventions, and Faith, Culture & Diversity. The degree is interdisciplinary and prepares students for a career in the nonprofit or for-profit social venture arenas. Click here for more information.
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