2013 Projects
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Akimbo Social2
Adrienne Rochetti

Akimbo Social2 works to address the highly inadequate access to employment opportunity and economic resources experienced by vulnerable populations in the U.S. and in developing communities around the globe.  Underemployment is also a major issue, with many individuals unable to find meaningful or sufficient work, and 1.3 billion people worldwide living below the poverty line.

In the U.S. alone, there are over 20 million people seeking employment.  This group of unemployed persons includes qualified, trained, and advantaged individuals, with everything from Ivy League degrees to PhDs and recruiters on their side.  This number, however, does not reflect the depth of the situation for the disadvantaged.  For example, there are currently about 11.5 million illegal immigrants living in the U.S. not counted in unemployment statistics and struggling to access opportunities because of limiting boundaries, such as education, language, and documentation.  For the developmentally disabled population in the U.S., the unemployment rate is 80% or even higher for some sectors within it.

There are a significant number of other groups in the U.S. and internationally that remain invisible in the employment landscape, such as oppressed women, veterans, victims of sex trafficking, former prisoners, individuals born into extreme poverty, and far more.  Communities are suffering because these individuals are financially dependent on society, unable to contribute to and enrich it with their unique perspective and abilities.  They exist within the margins, with economic empowerment being the key to their legitimization, inclusion into society, and, for some, their freedom.

Akimbo Social2 builds social social networks or social networks for social change.  These niche opportunity and professional development networks are a tool for social entrepreneurs and nonprofit organizations working in the space of inclusion for marginalized individuals.  The networks are turnkey as they are built off of an existing web platform, Akimbo, LLC (AkimboConnect.com).

The constituents that the nonprofit/entrepreneur aims to empower will be able to sign-up and create a rich media portfolio of their work, passions, and life experiences. For individuals who might lack the qualifications needed to stand out on a paper resume, or entrepreneurs who do not have access to marketing resources, Akimbo Social2 can legitimize their skills, enhance their professional appearance, and help showcase their products and services.  These sites can be tailored to address the relevant challenges faced by a specific population and highlight their special skills.  For example, autistic individuals often do not possess the social skills needed to succeed in a traditional interview setting.  Akimbo Social2 can provide a tool allowing them to post a video introduction showcasing their personality and qualifications in a more favorable setting.

Additionally, key influencers can sign-up for Akimbo Social2 to connect with users whose future they value improving.  They can post jobs, connect to and message users, sign-up for the mentorship program, write recommendations, and conduct searches for the specific type of user they want to support.

The Akimbo Social2 solution will provide changemakers with a powerful platform to transform antiquated hiring practices and to counteract the one-size-fits-all mold that currently exists in market systems around the world.

  • Romola

    Great concept – much needed!

    • Sean

      Definitely agree with this!

  • Priya

    LOVE IT!

  • Janine

    Wow! Wonderful idea

  • stef

    In regards to developing a comprehensive, action based solution that can create measurable social change while building community, this project hits the mark. The overarching nature of this platform really shows its potential to empower those who need that empowerment most. Awesome stuff !

  • Anonymous

    How might you integrate the benefits (and use user pools) of other existing platforms like LinkedIn, Idealist.org, etc?

  • Donna

    This can enable employers who want to help the disadvantaged but don’t know where to start.

  • http://twitter.com/TalibInHarlem Talib Hudson

    Congrats on getting to round 2. This idea sounds really interesting.

 

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