What is a Social Enterprise Business Model?

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What is a Social Enterprise Business Model?

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The Evolution and Spectrum of Non-Profit Organizations

A social enterprise is one of several organizational types delivering services and opportunities to their respective communities. Non-profits have a business model and the graphic below brings greater clarity to the options available in supporting a specific cause and community.

Business models progress from traditional charity to pure profit. Social Enterprises fit the middle of the spectrum from self-sustaining to mission-driven for-profit enterprises.

MDI sits the middle, reinvesting its profits in the mission of the organization - offering inclusive employment opportunities and services for people with disabilities.   

The take-away in all of this is the range and tremendous opportunities available in Social Enterprise models to serve the community, the mission of the organization and people. Social enterprises, if managed well, can provide an effective and efficient means of providing business-to-business services, improving the local economy and the quality of life of the people it serves.

*Adapted from CAF - Charities Aid Foundation, September 2008

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