Social Entrepreneurs: Taking On World Problems The past decade or so has seen explosive growth in the number of social entrepreneurs — innovators who take a business-like approach to solving social problems. NPR profiles some of these entrepreneurs.
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Social Entrepreneurs: Taking On World Problems

Read about innovators who take a business-like approach to solving social problems.

Jason Carney designed and installed the solar array on the roof of his house in Nashville, Tenn. He wants to introduce more people in minority communities to the advantages of solar energy. Tamara Reynolds for NPR hide caption

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Tamara Reynolds for NPR

Stepping Into The Sun: A Mission To Bring Solar Energy To Communities Of Color

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Anke Gladnick for NPR

Changing How You Think Helps The Transition From Prisoner Back To Citizen

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Trying to make the world a better place: (left to right) Skoll Award winners Gregory Rockson of mPharma, Nicola Galombik and Maryana Iskander of Harambee Youth Employment Accelerator, Nancy Lublin of Crisis Text Line, Bright Simons of mPedigree and Julie Cordua of Thorn. Greg Smolonski/Skoll hide caption

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Greg Smolonski/Skoll

Photos of Ethan Saylor are displayed on his mother's kitchen table. Meg Anderson/NPR hide caption

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Meg Anderson/NPR

How One Mother's Battle Is Changing Police Training On Disabilities

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Outreach workers from the organization Treasures visit strip clubs to let the women working there know that help is available if they want to get out of the commercial sex industry. Gloria Hillard/NPR hide caption

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Gloria Hillard/NPR

Getting Out Of The Commercial Sex Industry — With Help From Women Who've Been There

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Kelcei Williams says Year Up helped her realize that her previous jobs actually gave her a bunch of transferable skills. She's a team leader. She learns fast. And she can solve problems on the spot. Amr Alfiky/NPR hide caption

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Amr Alfiky/NPR

Resume Issues? Need An Internship? This Organization Can Help

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Teenage sisters Melati and Isabel Wijsen of Bali have received many honors for their efforts to ban plastic bags. Above: They accept the 2017 "Award for Our Earth" from Germany's Bambi Awards. Alexander Koerner/Getty Images hide caption

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Alexander Koerner/Getty Images

How Teenage Sisters Pushed Bali To Say 'Bye-Bye' To Plastic Bags

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Jason Jones (left) with his roommates Joe Klein and Tamiko Panzella in their Oakland, Calif., apartment. Panzella and Klein are participating in a new program to provide housing to former inmates. Jones was released recently after nearly 14 years in prison. Courtesy of Tamiko Panzella hide caption

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Courtesy of Tamiko Panzella

From A Cell To A Home: Newly Released Inmates Matched With Welcoming Hosts

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Sachets like these, developed to market consumer goods to the poor, have become ubiquitous all over Asia. Jes Aznar for NPR hide caption

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Jes Aznar for NPR

A New Weapon In The War Against Plastic Waste

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Sally Deng for NPR

Why This Charity Isn't Afraid To Say It Failed

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Micah Swimmer oversees a class of Eastern Band Cherokee language learners at the New Kituwah Academy in Cherokee, N.C. Behind him, a bulletin board displays the names of the few remaining fluent speakers of his Cherokee dialect. Liz Schlemmer/WUNC hide caption

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Liz Schlemmer/WUNC

To Save Their Endangered Language, 2 Cherokee Brothers Learn As They Teach

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Kolkata Woman Helps Children Of Sex Workers Break The Cycle

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Alicia Corman for NPR

Right-Wing Hate Groups Are Recruiting Video Gamers

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The shells are trucked over to Brooklyn's Greenpoint neighborhood and once a month are brought en masse to Governors Island in the heart of the New York Harbor. Billion Oyster Project has collected more than 1 million pounds of oyster shells so far. Courtesy of Agata Poniatowski hide caption

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Courtesy of Agata Poniatowski

Juan Pablo Romero (right), founder and director of Los Patojos, talks with current student Christopher Alvarado, who participates in the construction and maintenance of the new campus during the mornings in Jocotenango, Guatemala. James Rodriguez for NPR hide caption

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James Rodriguez for NPR

Seeds Of Maya Genius Grow In A New Kind Of School

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Third graders on board a floating school in Bangladesh run by the nonprofit group Shidhulai Swanirvar Sangstha. Mahmud Hossain Opu for NPR hide caption

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Mahmud Hossain Opu for NPR

'Floating Schools' Make Sure Kids Get To Class When The Water Rises

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Kennedy Odede (in blue shirt) is dancing for a good reason. The charity he and his wife started has been awarded the $2 million Hilton Humanitarian Prize. He's joined by residents of Kibera, the neighborhood in Nairobi where his nonprofit group provides educational, health and clean water services. Anwar Sadat hide caption

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Anwar Sadat

More companies are stepping in to help their workers with a much cheaper way to get some emergency cash than payday loans. MHJ/Getty Images hide caption

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MHJ/Getty Images

Walmart And Others Offer Workers Payday Loan Alternative

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