Enactus: businesses collaborate to support social entrepreneurial action

BITCI News - Jun 29, 2015

Maynooth University to represent Ireland at the prestigious 2015 Enactus World Cup in Johannesburg, South Africa for their project Access Earth.

Enactus NC1

Terence O’Rourke, Chairperson Enactus Ireland, announced Maynooth University as the winners of the prestigious 2015 Enactus Ireland National Competition for their project Access Earth. Access Earth is an information platform, like TripAdvisor, but the focus is on rating the accessibility of businesses/hotels/restaurants/shops for people to help people with physical disabilities make informed choices in relation to going to stay/visit places.

The winning team led by Darren Smith and comprising fellow students will represent Ireland at the 2015 Enactus World Cup in South Africa which takes place from 14-16 October.  The Irish students will compete against 35 countries at the annual global showcase and present the results of their community outreach projects through a written annual report and live audio visual presentation.

Enactus in an international non-profit organisation founded on the basic principle that entrepreneurial action can be a powerful catalyst for human progress.  Guided by educators and supported by business leaders, it provides a platform for teams of outstanding university students to create community development projects, while developing the skills to become socially responsible business leaders of the future.

The establishment of Enactus Ireland was a result of KPMG’s long-standing international support for the initiative.  The firm has been involved with Enactus in the US since 1990, helping grow the programme globally and, today, works with Enactus in over 30 countries worldwide. Enactus is one of KPMG Ireland’s signature CSR programmes where they are one of two lead sponsors of the programme and also support 14 bursaries to students from the non-winning teams and three bursaries to Faculty Advisors to also travel to South Africa to experience the World Cup.

KPMG has 16 staff who volunteer to participate on Business Advisory Boards for each of the participating third level institutes and the firm also engages with the students throughout the year supporting various training sessions.
The National Competition is an annual event where students come together to present the projects they have pioneered over the last 12 months and demonstrate how they are transforming lives and enabling progress through entrepreneurial action.

As part of the competition, seven student teams representing Dublin City University, Dublin Institute of Technology, Trinity College Dublin, University College Dublin, National University of Ireland Galway, National University of Ireland Maynooth and University College Cork, showcased their outreach efforts to a distinguished panel of executives.  Over the course of the day between the opening round and the final round, there was 68 senior level business people acting as judges who evaluated the quality and impact of the projects before announcing Maynooth University as winners.

Terence O’Rourke, Chairperson of Enactus Ireland, said, “Each year, the Enactus Ireland National Competition provides an opportunity for  the nation’s leading entrepreneurially-minded students to compete based on the quality of their community empowerment projects and depth of their impact.  Each team’s passion, determination and desire to transform lives is inspirational.”

Enactus Ireland is sponsored by KPMG and other members of the network Bank of Ireland, Abbott,Enterprise-Rent-A-Car, KBC Bank, Microsoft, Musgrave Group and also AIG, CarTrawler, Arthur Cox, New Ireland Assurance, Unilever, Willis, The Ireland Funds, Gibney Communications and the media partner, The Irish Times.

BITCI member companies support entrepreneurial action through outstanding university students that create community development projects while developing the skills to become socially responsible business leaders of the future.