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June 19, 2003

Alcoa Foundation Announces International Social Venture/Enterprise Initiative


International Experts, Funders and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) Will Convene at Wingspread and via Global Videoconference from 9 Locations Worldwide to Discuss Ways that NGOs Can Utilize Social Venture/Enterprise Strategies and Practices for Sustainability

Alcoa Foundation today announced its International Social Venture/Enterprise Initiative designed to improve the effectiveness and sustainability of non-governmental organizations by applying business and entrepreneurial strategies and practices in their organizations. The Foundation launched the initiative today with a first-of-its-kind international Forum including internationally recognized leaders, funders and NGOs on social/venture enterprise. Expert panelists at the Forum include: Bill Shore, Chairman, Community Wealth Ventures, Inc., USA; Jill Mordaunt, Lecturer on Social Enterprise, UK; Maria Anna de Rosas-Ignacio, Advisor and National Coordinator, Partnership of Philippine Support Services, Manila, Philippines; Dusan Ondrusek, PhD. Director, Partners for Democratic Change Slovakia, Slovakia; Nicole Etchart, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, NESsT, Chile; Mirjam Schoning, Director, Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship, Switzerland; Malcolm Hayday, Chief Executive, The Charity Bank Limited, UK; Robert Long, Vice President, W.K. Kellogg Foundation, USA; Geza Tatrallyay, Managing Partner, Vertis Environmental Finance, Hungary; and Vivianne Naigeborin, International Director, Center for Social Entrepreneurship Ashoka/McKinsey, Brazil. Alcoa Foundation's International Social Venture/Enterprise Initiative runs from June 19th through the 21st.

The Johnson Foundation's Wingspread Retreat and Conference Center, located in Racine, Wisconsin, USA, will host the Alcoa Foundation Forum where the international leaders, funders and NGOs will provide expert advice and hands-on experiences to assist NGOs in Alcoa communities to strengthen their planning, knowledge, funding and operating capacity through mission-based, earned income business ventures. Part of the Forum will also be videoconferenced to NGOs at 9 Alcoa locations worldwide, including: Ciudad Acuna, Mexico; Paranam, Suriname; Clarendon, Jamaica; Baie-Comeau, Quebec, Canada; Richmond, VA, USA; Alcoa, TN, USA, Sao Luis, Brazil; Pittsburgh, PA, USA and Warrick, IN, USA. They will also have an opportunity to participate, ask questions and stimulate a truly international dialogue on this fast-emerging topic.

"NGOs face a stark new reality: The need for their services is increasing at a time when available funds from traditional sources are decreasing," said Velma Monteiro-Tribble, senior program officer at Alcoa Foundation. "This initiative is designed to begin to expose and provide NGOs the opportunity to hear how this might be one way for them to sustain the needed services they provide in their communities."

"This Forum is timely and critical to help NGOs thrive in the challenging economic conditions so many of them face," said Bill Shore, Chairman of Community Wealth Ventures. "Alcoa Foundation is extending the discussion across so many geographical, socioeconomic and cultural boundaries with this Forum--the outcome is certain to move the NGO community forward in a positive way."

Three-Phase Initiative

The Forum at Wingspread is Phase I of the Foundation's Social Venture/Enterprise Initiative. Phase II, due to begin in the Fall, involves a Request for Proposal from qualified NGOs, located in selected Alcoa communities, to develop or further their plans for financial sustainability of their organizations. In Phase III, the NGOs that are awarded grants will be required to share their lessons learned and experiences with other NGOs.

The Social Venture/Enterprise Initiative is funded as a part of one of Alcoa Foundation's Areas of Excellence, Business and Community Partnerships. It is also part of Alcoa and Alcoa Foundation's ongoing strategy to be more than money in Alcoa communities worldwide. By combining grantmaking, expertise, employee engagement and convening power, the Foundation extends its reach and the value of its investments in nearly 200 Alcoa communities worldwide.

About Alcoa Foundation

Established in 1952, Alcoa Foundation is a global resource that actively invests in improving the quality of life in more than 29 countries around the world where Alcoa operates. The Foundation's grants address global and local need in Areas of Excellence that include: Conservation and Sustainability, Global Education and Workplace Skills, Business and Community Partnerships and Safe and Healthy Children and Families. For more information about Alcoa Foundation, visit, under Community.