(Priskila Ranindhita Hapsari - Management 2022)
On Saturday, Yasser Muhammad Syaiful, the Founder of Matahari Kecil, was invited as a guest lecture in an MBA class where he showed his life journey on creating a sanctuary for children to receive free education based on sociopreneurship (14/11/2020).
In 2015, Yasser witnessed a situation in which a child was begging for money in the streets during school hours. This led him to impulsively open a school for underprivileged children, purely out of empathy. This newly-opened school, Matahari Kecil, started off with 13 students and 20 volunteer teachers and he continued to tell that as years went on, his school grew up to a hundred students as the number of dropouts increased along with the unemployment rate as a result of these dropouts.
“The high unemployment rate is one of the economic issues in Indonesia,” Yasser stated, “unfortunately, the unemployment rate in Indonesia is dominated by the younger generations. Compared to the other ASEAN countries, Indonesia’s estimated number of open unemployment in 2017 was 19 percent for 15-24 year-olds, which was the second-highest after Brunei Darussalam.”
Matahari Kecil was created based on the concern of the underprivileged children’s well-being and as a start to help ease the country’s economic issues, which according to Yasser, is the right foundation of social entrepreneurship, or also commonly known as sociopreneurship. “Sociopreneurship is not about CSR, but it is about adding value. We need entrepreneurship that does not only focus on generating money, but also giving high social impacts, which is why the role of this country’s younger generations is crucial in entrepreneurship,” said Yasser. Based on the World Giving Index 2017, Indonesia has big potential for sociopreneurship, however, Indonesia’s entrepreneurship ratio is relatively small compared to other countries like Japan, Malaysia, and Singapore.
“The United Kingdom is the biggest sociopreneur country with more than 70,000 social enterprises, employing nearly one million people, and contributing $40 billion to the UK economy, which is two percent of their total GDP. One of the factors that encourage this phenomenon is because they have their own sociopreneur incubator, supported by the government too,” Yasser said, “on the other hand, the United States’ social enterprises employ more than 10 million people with a contribution of $500 billion or five percent of the total GDP towards the US economy.” Indonesia has a long way to go to reach where these two countries are with their sociopreneurial status, added with several more obstacles to conquer. Yasser claimed that the challenges Indonesia face are quite tough as the country is a large archipelago, troubling the government to reach every area of the country. That being said, the GDP of the country being raised by entrepreneurship is only one percent even though Indonesia has big potential with entrepreneurship. Yasser believes that this big potential can be reached just by starting small, firstly focusing on impact.