The technology available to us today allows us to work wonders in every walk of life. Most utilise it for profit purposes but there are many non-profit / charitable entities that are also making the most of the technologies available.
Seed Out is such an entity. Using the idea of crowdfunding, Seed Out is a non-profit platform which is working to end poverty by establishing micro-entrepreneurs through interest-free Micro-financing.
In operation since 2013, it currently operates in Lahore, Gujranwala, and Faisalabad. As many businesses struggle with cash-flow, the objective of Seed Out is to help local entrepreneurs grow their businesses without the burden of high interest rates loans that have short payback terms. So far Seed Out has nearly 400 beneficiaries and disbursed an amount of PKR 40 million. An impressive 30% of Seed Out beneficiaries are females; it has helped families come out of poverty by sending 1200 children to school, and impacted more than 2000 lives.
Seed Out seems to be doing some amazing work indeed. Recently, this was identified on a global level where the Founder and President of Seed Out, Zain Ashraf was awarded the prestigious Commonwealth Youth Award 2018 — the first Pakistani to receive the accolade.
As part of the ceremony, he met the royal family in London, UK. The ceremony was hosted as part of the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting. Princes William and Harry accompanied by Miss Meghan Markle congratulated Ashraf. They were impressed by the work of Seed Out in achieving the Sustainable Development Goal # 10 ‘Reduced Inequalities’ as part of their youth programme.
Such positive contributions to society are always welcome and applauded – especially in Pakistan where an extremely high number of people live below the poverty line. It is good to see the hard work by Ashraf and his team being noticed on a international stage.
Individuals like Ashraf are contributing to the development of the country and are an asset for Pakistan. We wish Ashraf and Seed Out all the best for their efforts in alleviating poverty and tackling the issues faced by the population in a way which is dignified and unpressurised.