Charlotte Rademaekers recently attended her third Social Venture Network (SVN) conference, and says each time she’s left with new relationships that support her business.
The co-founder and CEO of Call2Action says at her first SVN conference a year and a half ago she met Josh Knauer, a social entrepreneur and CEO of Rhiza Labs. Josh subsequently became a Call2Action board member and an “invaluable adviser.”
At the next SVN conference she attended, Charlotte found investors who propelled her to the next stage of Call2Action’s growth, she says.
And Charlotte found new partners and clients at this year’s SVN Oct. 27-30 conference entitled Movers, Shakers and Changemakers.
She says this demonstrates the conferences are more than “just talk.”
“For the first time I’ve really found a community and a network where I am planting seeds and building relationships and settling in and that’s because it feels like a family,” she tells Axiom News.
“It’s completely unlike other networks and communities,” she says. “It was quite a profoundly unique experience from my point of view.”
At other conferences about responsible business she says there is a feeling to “hold your cards close to your chest,” as the business mentality prevails.
But she says SVN is a place where people genuinely open up, help one another and figure out how to improve each other’s paths, projects and endeavours.
She calls it a “perfect balance between heart and mind,” where there is pragmatism where business is concerned and a desire to help the planet, be responsible and be part of the change.
A highlight of the conference was the opening plenary where Patrick Doherty of the New America Foundation and Col. Mark “Puck” Mykleby talked about Sustainability as a National Strategic Imperative, says Charlotte.
She says it was an inspiring session, with the speakers talking about envisioning a “new American dream and a new American society” with the kind of things one would imagine in a utopia but that is grounded in what’s possible. The speakers discussed smarter, economic solutions for everyone, and that going green not only saves money but provides jobs.
“That was so exciting to hear,” says Charlotte.
Having created a socially-responsible business, she says the conference messaging aligns with where she already is and is an affirmation that there are a community of people also on this path.
“It’s very uphill out here, away from the community, so (SVN conferences are) a huge opportunity to re-energize and get inspiration,” says Charlotte.
Call2Action ignites movements for social issue campaigns through its video, action and viral marketing tools.
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