This post was written by Michael Durante, Compass’s VP of Expansion.
From Gate 17 at Stockholm-Arlanda airport, my final window into Swedish culture after two weeks in this fine country, I write you this message. And what a two weeks it has been. Among navigating new city maps, public transit systems, currencies, and language barriers*, it was easy to forget what I was doing in Sweden: growing the Compass Fellowship.
This post was written by Heather Hingston, a Compass Fellowship alumna, a Compass Mentor at American University, and Founder of the [blank] canvas.
When I was an eensy-weensy high school student, I organized benefit shows in church basements for a charity about which I was very passionate. It had numerous challenges: finding an adult to sign the church’s contract, scrounging up $350 (only $150 of which would be returned as it was a deposit), getting six bands who were civil and peaceful and shared our values without being too expensive, marketing, and finding someone—ANYONE—to run sound.
Although it has been more than a year and a half since an earthquake killed 300,000 Haitians and wrecked the homes of a million more, surprisingly little progress has been made towards rebuilding Haiti. Janet Reitman’s recent piece in Rolling Stone has exposed some of the many failures behind the relief efforts in Haiti. Thousands upon thousands of Haitians continue to occupy makeshift camps across the country as they wait for Port-au-Prince and its surroundings to be rebuilt. With horrendous sanitation, a lack of clean water, and a state of general filth, these settlements are not fit to house this many people for much longer.
Just today, our friends at the Unreasonable Institute have launched an interactive and interesting showcase of 45 entrepreneurial ventures called the Unreasonable Marketplace. These finalists were selected from over 300 applicants in 60 countries. Each presented a financially self-sustaining venture that could possibly serve the needs of at least 1 million people as well as demonstrating customer validation through sales or pilots. According to the Unreasonable Institute, the ability to garner public support and fans is a direct measure of a venture’s success.