Halal Social Enterprise can be a Model in Bangsamoro Communities

The Strengthening Civil Society Participation in Social Enterprise Education and Development (CSO-SEED) Multi-stakeholders delegation to United Kingdom have returned home to their respective communities following a series of meetings and roundtable discussions including workshops on social enterprise model and community cooperatives successfully ended. 

The long week UK study trip was productive and fruitful undertakings to engage on new institutional models and organizational methods to understand and use the potential of social enterprises and cooperatives in the management of general interest services. 

The delegation from the Bangsamoro  to explore how civil society groups represented by social enterprise in the UK have achieved policy change and influence on how this learnings can be applicable to the country which continue to experience various socio-economic challenges.

The community of UK have implemented care reform program of the early 1990s that the government supported the third sector organizations that public money took the form of contracts and the third party payments instead of grants. 

UK cooperatives and social enterprises model can use different legal forms. The UK government keeps on responding the social entrepreneurship support activities and allows people to make profit for social enterprises. 

Social Enterprise (SE) defines an organization that applied business strategies to achieving philanthropic social goals. It is essential to recognize that SE can be structured as for profit or non-profit. The SE as businesses created for a social purpose to mitigate a market failure and to generate social value while showing innovation. 

While, Social Cooperative (SC) is a business organization owned and operated by a group of individuals for their shared benefits. Any profit generated by the SC was distributed to members commensurate with the amount of patronage each member provided. Some profits were used for the common good of enhancing member education and welfare.

Many commercial social enterprises would consider themselves to have social objectives. The economy is oriented on solving issues of poverty, unemployment, unstable peace and local development. It is developed on the base of concept of triple bottom line such as Economic, Social and Environmental benefits (ESE). These can be applied to all forms of entrepreneurship to support identifying solutions to many challenges where they turned ideas into action and achieved the goals of sustainability. Other SEs contributes by helping a specific group to achieving sustainable development. 

Tristan Ace, Global Social Enterprise Partnerships and Development Manager, British Council, emphasized that the role of social enterprises and government in UK is to generate more jobs contributing significantly to the economy and its gives social value for the community. 

Social enterprise in UK is best organized and has common interest through job creation.  

Ms. Angel Flores, Head of Society, British Council, realized that achieving peace requires everyday work. More than twenty years since the Good Friday Agreement, the peace process and dialogue continues to iron out the power sharing. There are dips now and then but the talks keep the peace. What we have seen is the possibility that someday ARMM and the proposed Bangsamoro region will also get on its journey the hope that a stable and prospering communities. 

“There is space for everyone to lead better lives,” she said. 

In the case of situation in Belfast, Northern Ireland has similar with the “Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro” (CAB) with a new crafted Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) to inspires from the Belfast’s experience with the “Good Friday Agreement” (GFA) that social enterprises have played a role in building community cohesion and was responded to various deprivation issues. Community businesses provided people with jobs and have helped ensure that the people secure better futures.  As post-conflict, social entrepreneurship was introduced to starts from a grant culture to move on to a business and encouraging the community participation. Flores said.

Jay Lacsamana, Executive Director, Foundation for a Sustainable Society Incorporated (FSSI) shared their reflection of the UK experience in Bangsamoro, Philippines, one can start in small pocket of communities where social capital and basis of unity among local stakeholders is strong and where those communities have significant command of local resources. 

“Social Enterprise to be sustainable will have to strike a balance between two contending realities in the Philippine context- producing cash income for basic needs of the economically deprived communities; and accumulating savings for investment in enterprise facilities that serve as the sustainable pathway for total human development.” Lacsamana said. 

The social enterprise model would be most effective in the Bangsamoro communities when the new enabling Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) is passed by the lower house and the upper house of congress. The new crafted BBL was submitted to the Office of the President and now in congress. 

The CSO-SEED project is a 3-year program led by British Council and co-funded by the European Union (EU) in the Philippines which aims to strengthen and improved civil society capacity participation in policy reforms to develop an environment conducive to decent work, job creation and SME development via social enterprise. 

CSO-SEED works through a consortium with Balay Mindanaw Foundation Inc. (BMFI), Foundation for a Sustainable Society Inc, (FSSI), Philippine Social Enterprise Network (PhilSEN), and the British Council in partnership with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) in the ARMM and the Civil Society Leaders as partners in the Bangsamoro communities for peace and development.