New Beginnings: How Social Entrepreneurship Mends

Ali Daud Omar will repair your cell phone for $6. He's one of the refugees benefiting from the Ugandan government's right to work policy.   Gregory Warner/NPR

Ali Daud Omar will repair your cell phone for $6. He's one of the refugees benefiting from the Ugandan government's right to work policy.

Gregory Warner/NPR

The refugee community is backed by their resilience and solidarity. Here at Glocally Connected, we keep local refugee’s integration at the core of our mission.

Recent correspondence in Uganda suggests that displaced refugees are allocating their skills and resources to small investments and businesses. Tendai Marima from Aljazeera states that, “entrepreneurship [will] foster stronger community relations with their Ugandan hosts.”

It’s a bilateral relationship from both hosts and refugees: a monetary and social exchange that enables mobility. This interaction and mixing “allows refugees to mingle rather than be enclosed within a settlement" (Aljazeera).

We’ve seen this historically happen. In 1975, when Saigon fell, the United States accepted roughly 130,000 Vietnamese refugees. As seen today, Little Saigon is flooded by small businesses  owned by Vietnamese refugees/immigrants who settled in the area.

“Vietnamese refugee Frank Jao opened Bridgecreek Development along Bolsa in 1978. He saw the potential for a Vietnamese business district and began buying land. At its peak, Bridgecreek owned one-third of all Little Saigon property, including the Asian Garden Mall" (OCRegister)

Mobilizing refugees through entrepreneurship is a promising future. What is instore for our refugees in Riverside if we were to implement a similar initiative?

City councils are actively looking into potentially building an Innovation District in Downtown Riverside. Entrepreneurs, students and community members gathered a few months back to discuss some of the “MUST HAVES” of this proposed Innovation District. While the discussion comprised of mainly bringing in tech industries, ideas about social entrepreneurship were not dismissed. In fact, a place that foster economic and social growth is an ideal place where refugees and non-profit organizations can thrive.

It is our goal to help alleviate and integrate refugees to their new home; however, allowing them to build their own communities independently and autonomously is effective and far more beneficial for both parties.

By: Kristina Fernandez, GC Director of Social Relations

Peace Walk, 17 September

Last year's Peace Walk

The “Peace Walk” in Riverside is an event created by Glocally Connected  to commemorate the UN’s International Day of Peace in order to bring attention to the consequences of war.

The International Day of Peace was established in 1981 by the United Nations General Assembly to coincide with its opening session, which was held annually on the third Tuesday of September. The first Peace Day was observed in September 1982. In 2001, the General Assembly by unanimous vote adopted 21 September as an annual day of non-violence and cease-fire.

Every year millions of people around the world become refugees because of conflict and war, and have to flee their countries seeking safety. It is our goal to lend a helping hand to refugees worldwide starting from our home in Riverside, CA. Please join us in making a statement to promote PEACE at home and PEACE in the world!*

It has been one year

Since Glocally Connected was born from passionate hearts of two world citizens

Since Aylan lay lifeless on a beach in Turkey

Since we tried to keep people’s attention on the gravity of the refugee problem

Since Germany opened their borders to unlimited refugees

Since they closed them a few days later

Since the number of refugees rose from 60 million to 65 million in the world

Since 89 thousand people were killed in the conflict in Syria bringing the total to 470 thousand

Since US promised to admit 10 thousand Syrian refugees

Since US admitted 1285 Syrian refugees

Since Turkey admitted another million refugees, reaching the number of Syrians nearly 4 million

Since Turkey and EU signed the agreement to send back refugees from Europe to Turkey

Since 72 thousand Syrians are said to be sent back to Turkey from Europe

Since 2.5 million Syrian refugee children are out of school

Since 55 bloody days of bombing of Aleppo killing and injuring 3500 civilians

Since the world did nothing to stop the civilian casualties

Since we had our 1st Peace Walk in Riverside commemorating International Day of Peace

What will we do next for Peace?


*Quote by M.K. Ataturk

Please sign up from the event's Facebook Page