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A Name to What I Have Been Doing for the Longest Time

I just finished catching up with work after my one week Capacity Building Workshop with YSEI at Kuala Lumpur. It was really fun as I learned so much and met a lot of new friends and networked with the most inspiring group of young entrepreneurs. I had the most wonderful opportunity of learning more about social entrepreneurship and running a social enterprise. For years, I have been working in our company and been trying to keep on sustaining and growing in order to provide jobs for IT graduates here in Mindanao but it was only recently that I learned that the dreams and mission that my partners and I had from the very start was actually leaning towards the concept of social entrepreneurship.
By definition, Social enterprises are organizations whose mission is to bridge social opportunity into sustainable reality innovatively, effectively and efficiently. Meaning, both elements of Social and economic return is considered at all times and is the goal of the enterprise (social enterprise plan).
One of the good things about the experience was knowing that I was not alone in my quest to help others in giving them jobs and a good profession. In the workshop, there were 19 participants from 8 different Asian countries (Bangladesh, Thailand, Malaysia, Pakistan, India, Nepal, Philippines & Sri Lanka). It was inspiring to be in the midst of fellow young social entrepreneurs (I’m still young! I’m still young! – Hey, age is only a number!!!) and learned so much from them. Most importantly, It was wonderful to feel their passion and drive in making things happen for society in a positive way.
These are the projects of my new found friends and I would like to congratulate them for their endeavors and thank them for making the intense one week training worth remembering:
Ejaj Ahmad
Country: Bangladesh
Project: Bangladesh Youth Leadership Center
Summary: Trains young people in Bangladesh hoping to alleviate religious and cultural tensions through dialogue.
Tantikalayaporn Thepparat
Country: Thailand
Project: Chivalry Silk Fair Trade
Summary: Sources silk material from rural communities in Thailand and sells it to the global marketplace through ecommerce. Most of the margins from this social enterprise goes back to the communities and helps them improve their income levels. This venture ensures the fair treatment and equitable income levels for the communities.


Davis Chong
Country: Malaysia
Project: Compucycle Malaysia Sdn Bhd
Summary: Creates employment and promotes ICT literacy by training young Malaysians on how to recycle e-waste. Environmental benefits also are produced by the reduction of e-waste on landfills.
Jamil Goheer
Country: Pakistan
Project: Cultural Classics
Summary: Sources hand-made crafts from rural communities in Pakistan and sells it to the global marketplace through ecommerce. Most of the margins from this social enterprise goes back to the communities and helps them improve their income levels. This venture also helps artisans maintain their skills in their crafts.
Devan singaram
Country: Malaysia
Project: Elevyn
Summary: Connects Malaysian cottage entrepreneurs directly to socially-aware consumers by means of a web-based platform. Each sale made through the platform yields income to the entrepreneur and also a financial contribution to the social projects in their communities
Prasoon Raghuwanshi
Country: India
Project: Enabling Kirana Store Owners to Leverage ICT for Market Expansion
Summary: Provides a web-based platform that congregates many Indian kirana store owners, strengthening their negotiation and marketing approach.
Urjana Shrestha
Country: Nepal
Project: Fair-Trade Crafts from Nepal
Summary: Sources hand-made crafts from rural communities in Nepal and sells it to global marketplace through ecommerce. Most of the margins from this social enterprise goes back to the communities and helps them improve their income levels. This venture also helps artisans maintain their skills in their crafts. This venture ensures the fair treatment and equitable income levels for the communities.
Yogesh chaudhary
Country: India
Project: Jaipur Rugs Company Pvt. Ltd
Summary: Ensures the proper production of rugs without the ill-treatment of workers, particularly child labor, which is very common in the rug industry in India. The venture also ensures that the workers are fairly compensated.
Aysha Saifuddin
Country: Pakistan
Project: Kaarvan Crafts Foundation
Summary: Assists female entrepreneurs in Pakistan on the development of their marketing and business strategies to incorporate fair trade policies.
Raghvendra Singh
Country: India
Project: Krishak Mitra (Farmer’s Friend)
Summary: Assists Indian farmers on the use of computers to develop decision-making and business strategies.
Stephanie Rosalind Caragos
Country: Philippines
Summary: Supports underprivileged young IT graduates in the Philippines to develop skills that raises their employment chances.
Ratnayake Ratnayake
Country: Sri Lanka
Project: LiLi DairyCentre
Summary: Empowers women from Sri Lanka as an element of cohesion and stability in their families by the application of ICTs to increase income.
Patcharaporn Pansuwan
Country: Thailand
Project: Opendream Co., Ltd
Summary: This venture focuses on providing non-profits and other development organizations with web development services. It employs a unique business model that provides a subsidy for lower-paying non-profit development organizations.
Christine Lopez
Country: Philippines
Project: Philippines Mobile Telecenters (MTC)
Summary: Capacitates young Filipinos on ICT skills using mobile telecentres mounted on 3-wheeled trikes.
Srikanthan Selvaratnam
Country: Sri Lanka
Project: Rural Knowledge Center of Koslanda
Summary: Capacitates marginalized youth on ICT skills that enhances their employment opportunities
Alexander Reyes
Country: Philippines
Project: RuralLight
Summary: Intends to provide low-cost, environmentally friendly energy and related services to rural communities that cannot afford electricity from traditional grid sources.
Wanisa Ket-Ho
Country: Thailand
Project: SMART / ETC
Summary: Training disadvantaged young Thais in computer and English literacy, Advanced Emergency Care and marine conservation, enabling an increase of 3 to 7 time in their income while promoting the conservation of marine resources.
Ajay Shakya
Country: India
Project: Microfinance Jobs
Summary: This is an online brokerage to match job seekers and job opportunities in the growing Microfinance sector. In addition to providing a space for job placements, the venture also helps provide value added placements for interested microfinance institutions.
Ali Khan
Country: Pakistan
Project: Youth Engagment Services Network Pakistan
Summary: Aims to empower and support youth in rural and marginalized communities to develop a range of solutions tailored for their communities. Some of these solutions include commercial ventures led by youth to help support the income generation and other social services in those communities.


So now, I’m back in Cagayan de Oro with an even more determined will and purpose to keep growing. Also, I’d like to give my sincerest thanks to Janette Torral and Aileen Apolo for their show of support for the project.

About The Author


Stephanie Caragos is the President & CEO of the 19 year running IT Company, Syntactics, Inc. and is the founder of, a program and initiative that envisions in helping young Filipinos hone their skills in IT and increase their chances of getting stable and profitable jobs. She is also the founder of Syntactics PINK (Promoting Innovation Networking and Knowledge) for women to encourage and empower more women in IT and to encourage the younger generation of women take up STEM. She is a speaker and mentor in various Startup, Online Marketing, Web, ICT and ICT businesses related seminars and talks and works tirelessly in finding innovative ways of marketing online for clients. She is also a staunch supporter of Filipino Small and Medium Enterprises as she continues to develop products and services that would benefit SMEs as well as help them increase their success rate in using technology in business. Stephanie is currently the president of the CDO ICT Business Council and works with the members and stakeholders in the city in promoting ICT to support more startups and create more jobs in the city. She also currently serves as a director for the Eisenhower Fellowship Association of the Philippines. She has completed her Eisenhower Fellowship and was awarded as the Douglas Dillon Named Fellow for the year 2016 and recently completed her term as National President for the National ICT Confederation of the Philippines last 2017.

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