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Global round up

28 April 2010

Your weekly round-up of global news from Social Enterprise

Australian report shows government support for social enterprise

Australia’s parliamentary secretary for social inclusion and the voluntary sector, senator Ursula Stephens, this week highlighted the government’s support for social enterprise with the release of a report on how the sector down under is financed.

Financing Social Enterprisewas produced by social investor Foresters Community Finance and highlights the need for Australian social enterprises to move away from grant funding to more sustainable finance.

Stephens said: ‘Like Foresters Community Finance, the Australian Government has been investigating ways to better support the sustainability of the social enterprise sector.

‘[It] is committed to ensuring the long term sustainability of the social enteprise sector as we work to create a stronger, fairer Australia.’

'Groundbreaking' fair trade standard for gold

The first Fair Trade certification for gold launched by the Alliance for Responsible Mining and Fairtrade Labelling Organisations International has been labelled 'groundbreaking' and 'potentially revolutionizing' by social entrepreneur Jesse Finfrock in triplepundit.com.

Finfrock, who runs jewellery social enterprise The Clarity Project said: 'The launch of these new standards is a groundbreaking and praiseworthy step towards empowering miners to improve social and environmental conditions in the mining industry.

'The first Fair Trade certification for gold [is] potentially revolutionizing metal industries stretching from mining to jewellery and opening up new market opportunities for millions of responsible small-scale miners,' said Finfrock.

Local communities need help in Indian tiger tourism crisis

The announcement by the Indian government that tiger tourism is to be banned in most of its natural reserves is of 'great concern' says responsibletravel.com founder Justin Francis.

Francis, who was backed by Bodyshop founder Anita Roddick to set up the travel enterprise in 2001, believes a temporary ban is necessary 'at this critical stage' but the loss of livelihood for local communities will pose as big a danger to the tigers if properly regulated, responsible tourism does not return in the near future.

'If no alternative sources of income or compensations are forthcoming we predict greater tensions between communities and park authorities to the detriment of tiger conservation...it's very sad that it's come to this, let's hope it's not too late,' said Francis.