Madison Social Entrepreneurship

Entrepreneruship comes in all shapes and sizes.  This blog has focused more on the business side, but today’s post will highlight a great story of social entrepreneurship.

Becky Hall is a Freshman at the University of Wisconsin and started Going For 10,000, a campaign to raise money for the MS 150 bike ride this summer.  While some may say that raising money for charity is not entrepreneurship, we disagree.  Hall has created a website, organized resources and persevered through challenges, much in the same way that business owners do.  She has done all of this without getting a direct monetary benefit for herself.  If you are interested in helping Becky toward her goal, you can visit her blog or donate here.  Here’s her story from her blog:

For the last nine years, I’ve spent the first weekend of August at the MS150 Best Dam Bike Tour. I ride for my mom. Doctors diagnosed her with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) ten years ago. Today, she’s doing well. She has her rough patches, but that woman’s a fighter. When she’s hurting, you’ll never know. I ride so someday she may not have MS.

MS attacks your Central Nervous System. Every person is affected with different symptoms at a different rate. It’s nearly impossible to predict what path my mom’s MS will take. That scares me. During the MS150, participants ride their bikes from Waukesha to Madison to advocate for the disease and fundraise for research. The first weekend of August, the weekend we ride, is the most important two days of my year.

My family rides with Charlie’s MS Angels, a team started by Peggy Siewert whose husband Charlie was diagnosed with MS 14 years ago. On January 22, Charlie died. The Siewerts are amazing people, and they were the first family that we really got close to within the “MS world.” Charlie was sick four years longer than my mom. Only four years. That really scares me.

In December, I visited Charlie in hospice care. While there, Peggy jokingly said I should raise $10,000 this year, the amount she raises. So naturally, I made that my goal.  It’s almost ten times as much as I’ve raised before, but I like to go big. This is really important to me, so I’m contacting every person I know. I set this website up so people can track my progress and eventually, make online donations. I’m guess I’m just doing everything I can think of.

This year, my tenth year, I’m going to raise ten thousand dollars for my mom and for Charlie.

Former Badger Leading Private Rescue Mission to Haiti

Former UW football player and former US Marine is leading a humanitarian mission to Haiti providing emergency medical relief.  He was fed up with the beaucracy and red tape involved with helping Haitians, so he formed his own effort, Team Rubicon, comprised of doctors, nurses Milwaukee firefighters, former Marines and other aid workers.

Team Rubicon, a truely entrepreneurial relief effort, is currently working in Haiti, providing medical relief to Haitians who need it.  The entire mission is privately funded, so if you have extra cash you can donate here.