On the final day before the shelter-in-place order came down, the CCT held the city’s first-ever Expo featuring Social Enterprises. Cornerstone Coffee, a Spark Tank award winning business hiring women coming out of rehab, hosted a dozen enterprises focused on solving community problems through sustainable business models rather than through charity. These included Patriot House working with homeless veterans, Xue Fair Trade helps indigenous tribes have income and clean water in Colombia, WorkGnome is creating an ap to help rural job seekers get connected to employment opportunities, Lanna Coffee digs clean water wells in Northern Thailand through the roasting and selling of Thai coffee beans, Central Valley Creations turning discarded materials into furniture and art in Malaga, and GiVE Culture T-Shirts changing our sometimes toxic social atmosphere into positive messaging. The Fresno Business Journal covered the event and took the feature photo, as did Valley Public Television, shooting extensive interviews and footage.
Having broken new social and economic ground in our city by creating a social enterprise ecosystem, the CCT continues to expand the category with these such events, hopefully the first of many to come. After shelter-in-place ends, of course!