Not only are they the unwilling subjects of hatred at home and suspicion at their destination, refugees and immigrants face some of the most disorienting experiences that humans can have. Often in a matter of days or weeks, their reality shifts from relative safety to catastrophic risk as they fly from peril or strike out in hope of something new.
Instead of just policy debates, we're interested in building ventures that actively help individual people and families going through these experiences, including transition safety, job provision, shelter, education and more. We’re also seeking ventures that help refugees and immigrants adapt and contribute to a new culture without losing their own.
In today’s commercially-driven world people are more likely to be seen and referred to as 'consumers' than anything else. Instead of being met with resistance, this shift has often meant that individuals have formed their identity through a composite of brands, and product purchasing can be guided more by the desire to make a statement about one’s identity and values than strict utility. As a result, the lines between social movement, capitalism, and community are increasingly blurry (see: Nike, Whole Foods, and Patagonia).
Given this reality (which is with us for both better and worse), we’d like to support entrepreneurs with a vision for building brands with a counter-culturally virtuous and optimistic view of the world, spreading hope and beauty, eliminating stigma, and most fundamentally, redirecting our identity away from materialistic consumption and toward lasting contentment.
Praxis VEntures Working On This ORI
is a staffing agency that helps great companies hire dependable employees from the refugee workforce (Chris Chancey, Business 2018, acquired).
seeks to increase the graduation rate of Hispanic high school students through leadership, education, and community service (David Araya & Angela Hurtado, Nonprofit 2017).
employs creative business solutions that promote self-reliance and the integration of refugees and immigrants into their new communities. They are built on the investment hypothesis that refugees and immigrants are stable and highly desirable residential tenants (Jimmy Wright & Michael Hall, Business 2022).
Hannah Song (Nonprofit 2013) assists North Korean refugees to China, helping them escape through a 3,000 mile modern-day "Underground Railroad" then provides support in their new lives once they have resettled in South Korea or the United States.