As soon as we learn the language, we realize that the world is divided into binary opposites- without knowing one, the other does not exist. Such as we understand what darkness is by the idea of light; we learn what is evil by the absence of goodness, and we taste happiness after going through a phase of sadness.
Similarly, problems and solutions are a common dichotomy. We know, no problem exists without its solution. As social entrepreneurs say, to be able to provide a better solution, one must be aware of the problem in society first.
But who are Social entrepreneurs?
Social entrepreneurs are like a resilient force of our society with a business goal that emphasizes the common good. Their professional purpose is to improve the world, in whatever capacity they can, to make the earth a living space while enjoying financial freedom. In short, they use business to tackle social problems.
In Pakistan, they are often confused with NGOs or IGOs because of their philanthropic work or purpose-driven business model. Since their inclination is toward common social good, they are often found pitching unique and innovative business ideas that are not only environmentally sustainable but could change the people’s perspective, behavior, and approach towards a specific problem.
Pakistan has an untapped potential that needs to be explored and discussed more often, especially after the emergence of digital technology, the doors to success are wide open.
According to the Thomson Reuters Foundation, Pakistan has secured 14th place among the best countries for social entrepreneurs, making Pakistan a whole land of opportunities for socially driven business people.
According to the report, many startups are moving towards sustainable financial growth, intending to create a social impact in Pakistan. Using technology, they cater to the needs of the people, provide a more immersive experience, and focus more towards delivering the quality of the product with efficiency and effectivity in mind.
Here are the five startups that show Pakistani entrepreneurs are providing the best possible solutions for the country’s betterment.
Within three years, this young social enterprise has achieved many milestones from being featured in Forbes to being the first Pakistani organization to receive Diana Awards in 2019. Their services are exceptional when it comes to empowering the deaf community of Pakistan. They advocate for socially inclusive Pakistan by providing interpretation services, translation, sign language training, and awareness campaigns.
They also actively participate in all-inclusive activities such as establishing Pakistan’s first deaf inclusive theater to Tv interpretation services. They are on a mission to create an accessible environment for the people with hearing difficulties so that they are not discriminated against or rejected at any point in time and equip the undermined community with the right tools that help them communicate independently.
Formally known as MyDoctor.pk was established in 2016 to provide healthcare facilities to patients at the convenience of their homes. They are on a mission to help millions of Pakistan connect with the professional doctor and assist in times of need by providing their helpful services. Patients can book an appointment, free of cost, by merely calling on their helpline, visiting websites, or mobile application. In the case of lab tests, they have collaborated with Aman Foundations and Chugtai lab, who deliver medicines at the door or collecting the samples to delivering online test reports.
Their services are commendable when it comes to revolutionizing the telehealth and telemedicine services in Pakistan. This digital startup has made 7 million citizens better during the Covid-19 lockdown with the help of DoctHers by offering their services free of cost.
This e-commerce platform aims to bring innovation and ease of shopping in the online grocery shopping experience by enabling local businesses and retailers to reach the consumers at the right time with quality products. Although they are still at their nascent stage, their aim is high for providing and encouraging collective good. Their e-commerce platform provides a digital space through which consumers buy groceries, but also the local businesses sell their products, marketize their brand, and generate a side hustle livelihood.
They are on a mission to revolutionize the grocery industry in Pakistan by developing a chain of trustable stores that offer grocery home delivery services with no compromise on quality or time, but also to uplift and promote the local business and market
Learning Pitch is an EdTech Startup with the dream to make quality education affordable and accessible for every Pakistani student. Through the use of technology, they aspire to create quality content that is engaging, fun, and interactive for students. Their mantra is to change the educational landscape of Pakistan through disruptive EdTech.
For the first time in Pakistan, they introduced the learning glass and Edx MOOC model that makes learning engaging and provide a personalized learning experience. Within three years, they have received two awards, including Pasha ICT Award 2019 for being the Best EdTech company in Pakistan.
During the Covid-19, more than 40,000 students gained access to their LMS system after the educational activities suspension. They also provide full scholarships for deserving students, promoting the more significant cause of education, with three separate Platforms for intermediate, accounting, finance, and Primary levels students.
To provide therapy, remedy, academic facilities, and entertainment to children with special needs, they innovate traditional learning and revolutionize remedial practices. They make augmented reality and VR games for differently abled children. Wonder Tree was started in 2015 as a small cause, and since then, it has received many awards because of its services, including the third prize at the Global Innovation through Science and Technology (GIST) 2016 at Stanford.
They not only revolutionize the gaming industry by innovating game as a tool for medical and threptic purposes, but also provided valuable addition to the educational landscape. They develop the fun and engaging resources for children with special needs that helps them become better everyday. Their mission is to accelerate cognitive and motor development in children while ensuring the children’s well-being and healthy educational activities.
The perseverance of these social startups teaches us they are still selfless people who think beyond themselves, and no matter how many problems we have in Pakistan, there is always a way to solve the problem; only one must be keen enough to find out.
RidaeBatool is a linguist and a writer. She values innovation and advancement and wants to keep her audience engaged with insightful content. She is a curious individual who loves to write on tech, business, and other topics to share knowledge and valuable information.