The academic year just completed saw the second edition of the B Corp School project, culminating in the ChangemakerCompetition on 6 June. Way2Global was an active participant throughout the project, with a staff member acting as a class mentor and judge at the final awards ceremony.
The BCorpSchool project is a work-experience initiative aimed at secondary school students and has the goal of introducing young people to Benefit Corporations. Organised by InVento Innovation Lab, a Benefit Corporation that works to raise awareness of sustainability, the project was launched in 2017 and quickly attracted growing numbers of schools teachers and young people.
The BCorpSchool project offers secondary school students the chance to use their work experience — which is now a compulsory part of school curricula — to explore the revolutionary phenomenon of Benefit Corporations. These innovative companies strive to run their businesses in a sustainable manner, thus having a positive impact on society and the environment.
Within the context of these shared goals and the spirit of collaboration that brings all Benefit Corporations together, Way2Global had the honour of taking part in the project by acting as a mentor for the kids, helping them understand the concept of “sustainable business” and devise their own product with a positive impact. We also served as a judge at the final awards ceremony.
Way2Global’s Institutional Relations expert Pietro Schenone volunteered to mentor Class 4H at IIS Racchetti Da Vinci in Crema and made an invaluable contribution, drawing on his experience as the former director of the Civica Scuola Altiero Spinelli, where he still teaches.
“Seeing the enthusiasm and energy of the kids as they realised how they could become key players in the regeneration of the planet and the construction of their future was a breath of fresh air. It made me see there’s hope for us yet!”
Pietro Schenone, Institutional Relations, Way2Global Srl SB
The 2018/19 edition of the B Corp School project concluded with the Changemaker Competition on 6 June, which saw all the school classes involved in the project take part in a final contest organised in the brand-new Le Village in Milan.
In this stunning setting, the pupils — led by their mentors and teachers — had the chance to present their ideas and pitch their Benefit Corporation start-ups to a panel of experts. The panel had to pick winners in four categories: “Best B Corp School Start-up” (the start-up that best represented the B Corp criteria in terms of social and environmental impact), “B Community” (the most engaging and impactful start-up for the community), “B Circular” (the start-up that came up with the best circular economy project) and “B SDGs” (the start-up that would make the biggest contribution to achieving the UN’s 2030 Agenda).
The children put everything they had into a 90-minute pitch to present their sustainability ideas: eco-friendly single-dose hydrosoluble shampoo capsules, shopping bags made from recycled coffee sacks, inspired by the circular economy, an app that connects events managers, private transport companies and young people without a driving licence to enable them to safely attend concerts and youth events, an initiative to eliminate plastic bottles, leading to the first plastic-free school in Italy, and more.
All 22 start-ups taking part were assessed against a series of stringent criteria, including the innovation/originality of their product/service, how well it responded to an environmental/social need or problem, the potential for scalability, how environmentally and socially sustainable the idea was, and the overall quality of the pitch.
For the second year, Way2Global — a certified Benefit Corporation — was represented on the judging panel by its founder and CEO Laura Gori.
“It’s an honour and a pleasure for us to participate in projects like this. Seeing the passion, enthusiasm, competence and creativity with which the kids bought to sustainability was a wonderful feeling.”
Laura Gori, founder & CEO of Way2Global
In order to consolidate the Benefit Corporation network and actively participate in common initiatives and projects, it’s vital that we build bridges, form networks and encourage the diffusion of this revolutionary and regenerative business model. It's why Way2Global firmly believes in the importance of educating and raising awareness of the issue of sustainable business, especially among children — who, after all, are our future.
Giving young people the chance to gain first-hand experience of this new business model allows them to adopt a pragmatic approach to tackling our planet’s more pressing needs and understand how important the personal contribution of every one of us can be in finding the answers.
“Our experience — and their creativity — will save the world.”
Laura Gori, founder & CEO of Way2Global
For more info on the project and the competition, go to: http://www.inventolab.com/blog/comunicato-stampa-changemaker-competition-b-corp-school/