Andrew Youn and the One Acre Fund

Andrew Youn is a founder of the One Acre Fund, a social enterprise that provides necessary equipment and skills that are necessary for farmers to farm their land. He embodies many of the social entrepreneurial traits. Most importantly, he is innovative. While many previous attempts directed at solving poverty were largely done through unilateral donation, Andrew seeks to do this by providing necessary equipment and skills because he believes that there are already enough food in the world –it is just a matter of distributing the surfeit of food to everyone around the world. Moreover, his businesses are entirely socially driven, since he aims to help poor African farmers. He is also willing for other enterprises to replicate his model of educating and distributing equipment to farmers –not just a mere one time donation. Furthermore, he has an explicit aim. He aims to tackle poverty not just in the short-run but in the long-run, by enabling all African farmers to be able to produce agricultural products by themselves. He wants the farmers receiving their help to be self-sufficient in the long run, so that they can focus on another farmers. Finally, Andrew Youn displayed a dogged determination despite the risks he faced. He first decided to establish Acre Fund when he first visited Kenya in 2006. At first, he himself did not have enough capital and knowledge to establish the business. But since then, Youn raised donation from various other non-profit and charity organizations by explaining what he aims to achieve. He also experienced the vicious cycle of poverty himself to better understand the dire circumstances of poor Kenyan farmers by actually living in their houses and asking them lots of questions. These social entrepreneurial traits –persistence, explicit social aim, innovation- allowed him to establish One Acre Fund ten years later his first visit in Kenya. Now, the organization serves more than 400,000 families. I believe that the idea of distributing necessary equipment and skills instead of one time donation is novel and innovative. But I also believe that there is also a room for development to his businesses. He could expand his businesses by utilizing new social mechanisms like microfinance and crowd-funding to meet the needs of more farmers in Africa.


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