As usual, passing through Brazil for the Holidays season, I had a chance to see my family and old friends, to make some professional contacts and to work on some pending items of my thesis in the weeks that I was between São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. On these wanderings by Brazilian lands, I had the opportunity to participate of the Social Business Weekend, event organized by Yunus & Youth created to disseminate the concept of social businesses among young people. Yunus & Youth is an organization that train, equip and connect social business entrepreneurs throughout the world to scale the impact of their businesses. The idea of joying the event was dig into social business thematic and get closer to the world of the social entrepreneurship in Brazil, casting a first glance at some of the initiatives which are been accelerated by Yunus & Youth around here.
I must admit that at first I felt a little my age given that the majority of the more than 80 participants were young folks in the age group of 20 to 30 years old. However I quickly got over that feeling of misplaced, a kind of fish out of the water, and looking back now inspired me to write this entry in “The Sun Jar” blog. I think it’s worth the register… To take part of such initiatives and to come closer to those young people of the also called “Y generation”, I feel strengthened the hope that I carried at bottom of my heart that the reality of our world can somehow be altered, that there are other paths and alternatives.
Two and half years ago, in a statement of purpose letter to The United Nations Youth Leader which I wrote making me available to collaborate with their programs I quoted some verses of a Supertramp song describing my years in the corporative world without much purpose… “They send me away to teach me how to be sensible, logical, responsible, and practical. And they showed me a world where I could be so intellectual, cynical…” The reflection back then was that life ended up harden our spirits with the reproduction of its “truths” and in this process of let convince ourselves we ended up becoming a little cynic, as individuals or even as society… We let harden ourselves most of the time just reproducing preconceived models of life, as there is no alternative…
Coming into contact with so many young people and knowing a little about their projects and, most important, share their dreams of not just finding a purpose of life but also leaving their mark in building a better, fairer, more sustainable world I remembered among many references a video published in UpWorthy last year with a beautiful reflection that sometimes mistakes are the best things that can happen to us. Back then it inspired me to write that “Try as you might to control everything and everybody, life never will be precise … Don’t make mistakes perhaps is just a reproduction of what is out there. And the world needs desperately of people that think differently and that make mistake. And especially learn with their mistakes”.
In the light of these reflections, it is worth saying that in events such the Social Business Weekend you can witness this recent phenomenon of the post modernity… The convergence between pursuit of purpose and social awareness among young people who dare to think differently, outside of the boundaries and pre conceptions of their lives dangerously and tediously formatted; and that dare to dream with a different world. A world of new realities… What many would call utopia, full loaded with the pretentiousness and youthful enthusiasm of those who believe they are capable of everything. Crazy or still ingenuous enough to think that they can change the world…
Those who dream with a purpose of life that goes beyond the concern of ensuring a livelihood and providing for themselves and for their families and of the urgency and eagerness to accumulate for who knows one day. Those who dream with a more solidary and cooperative world where sharing and building together can be converted even into sound businesses practices capable of improving life of those underprivileged, promote sustainable development and even generate economic surplus. I know that for some it may sound fiction, but as Proust once said in search of his, my and our lost time: “if a little dreaming is dangerous, the cure for it is not dream less, but dream more, to dream all the time”.
Photo Credits: Luiz Alfredo Santos