Chair Message

Mrs Rebecca YUNG

Mrs Rebecca CHOY YUNG
Chair, Organising Committee of Social Enterprise Summit, HK

Covid-19 has unveiled the fragility behind man’s relentless economic drive at the expense of nature and cultures. The severity of climate crisis, dwindling biodiversity, widening inequality and battles over resources have called for a bigger leap beyond current remedial efforts. The vanguard of visionaries has proposed a future based on the concept of REGENERATION, shifting from prosperity to ‘thrivability’, focusing on planetary and societal wellbeing, from food, health, economy, community to culture, and more. Whilst sustainability is about reducing harm, regeneration is about reversing damage with net-positive impact. It calls for owning social accountability rather than just private interests. Building upon this innovative ideology, there have been maturing theories, tools and pilot projects developed to fulfill other aspects of REGENERATION, with ample application for social innovators.

Being the region’s principal forum on social enterprise and social innovation, the 14th Social Enterprise Summit (SES 2021) will be themed “Building Blocks of a Regenerative Future”. It will take a hybrid format, with over 70 eminent speakers from the social, governmental, commercial and academic sectors. We are especially thrilled to have Mr Charles Eisenstein keynoting on Day 1. Author to “Sacred Economics”, Charles will share how mankind should return from the de-railed ‘story of separation’ to the ‘story of interbeing’, and the road to reform our society.

The three tracks on Day 1 and 2 are guided by an overarching, forward-looking direction to a regenerative future. Track 1 - “Co-Creating an Open Knowledge Hub for Ecosystem Development” will cover the why’s and how’s of shared insights. Track 2 - “Building Alliances for Regional Collective Impact” will bring Asian leaders to work together and explore the ‘interbeing’ nature of successful social initiatives. Track 3 - “Bridging Purpose with Actions” will cover how resources can be channeled effectively to purpose-led projects. On Day 3 and 4, delegates will be immersed in social innovation visits and workshops which are both fun and educational. In addition, two networking events will be held during the International Symposium, including an NGO Engagement Luncheon and a Dinner to Remember to instigate collaboration in a relaxed setting. There will also be a B Corp workshop to inspire the business sector to contribute socially, and the DBS x SES Social Impact Programme, which aims at grooming the next generation of regional social leaders, to be held in early 2022.

This year’s SES Community Programme happened between July to November, expanding to 9 districts, with the addition of Kowloon City, Tai Po and Wan Chai. A multivariate range of activities have taken place, including engaging SE Labs, school talks and tours, a fun-filled SE bazaar and a barrier-free community carnival.

I would like to thank our advisors, sponsors, partners, co-organisers and supporting organisations. All these events would not be possible without their unfailing support. With the mission to serve as the regional knowledge hub, resource exchange and social innovation movement builder, we look forward to collaborating with you for a regenerative future.