Social Entrepreneur of 2008 – Arbind Singh of Nidan

Arbind Singh of Nidan, a NGO working in Bihar has been declared the winner of the Social Entrepreneur of the Year Award 2008 in India (at World Economic Forum’s India Economic Summit).

Nidan is developing sustainable businesses, cooperatives, trade unions and “people’s institutions” led by the most excluded categories of the poor in Bihar. It has promoted and built 20 independent profit-making ventures governed and owned by the urban poor including waste workers, ragpickers, vegetable vendors, construction labourers, domestic helpers, micro-farmers, street traders and other marginalized occupation groups. As legitimate competitors in the mainstream economy, the collectives negotiate with the government for their rights and entitlements – source

From Nidan’s website

Since last 10 years, NIDAN has been working on various development issues with informal workers belonging to the poorest section of society. Nidan has successfully organized a large number of workers-around 60,000.
The thrift and credit program of Nidan is covering more than 20,000 workers .The present turnover including linkages with banks is around 4 crores.. A micro-insurance program is already covering 26,000. Individual insurance is also being encouraged and around 5000 workers

Well, it does take lot of guts and courage to launch an initiative like this!

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Recommended Read:Social Entrepreneurship in India – Reality Check

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