By: Maat Re


“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world” – Nelson Mandela.

Education is a fundamental human right and a powerful catalyst for sustainable development. The United Nations’ fourth Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) aims to “ensure of inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.” This goal recognizes that access to quality education is not only essential for empowerment but also imperative for building prosperous, resilient, and inclusive communities.

Educational attainment is at the root of our work at SETSI. Social innovation and social impact work is driven by knowledge mobilization and knowledge translation. Community members on the margins of the economy usually are not provided with sustained meaningful access to opportunities and education. One of the most significant barriers to achieving quality education is the persistent inequality in access to educational opportunities. We should all have a commitment to social inclusion and community engagement which creates sustainable solutions to address these disparities and ensure that all individuals, regardless of their gender, socioeconomic status, or background, have access to quality education.

By working closely with local communities and stakeholders, we can identify and address the specific challenges faced by marginalized, under-served and underrepresented groups. Through partnerships with educational institutions, community organizations, philanthropic foundations and government agencies, we can contribute to the development of inclusive and accessible educational programs that cater to the diverse needs and experiences of communities.

“Once you carry your own water, you’ll remember every drop.” ~ Yoruba Proverb

Education should not only impart knowledge but also equip individuals with the skills and competencies necessary to thrive in an ever-changing world. A focus on learning and innovation creates opportunities to develop and promote educational programs that are relevant, engaging, and aligned with the evolving needs of communities.

By collaborating with educators, subject matter experts, and industry professionals, we can contribute to the development of curricula that emphasize critical thinking, problem-solving, entrepreneurship, and social responsibility. This includes hands-on learning experiences, project-based learning, and exposure to real-world challenges and case studies, ensuring that learners are well-prepared to navigate and contribute to the dynamic social and economic landscapes.

“A child that is not embraced by the village will burn it down to feel its warmth.” ~ Akan Proverb

Education is not a one-size-fits-all endeavor; it must be tailored to the specific needs and aspirations of different age groups and life stages. This emphasis on intergenerational collaboration creates opportunities to develop educational programs and initiatives that cater to the unique needs of youth while also fostering knowledge-sharing and learning across generations. It is imperative that we support our young people as it relates to educational attainment, the future of our communities depend on this key action.

By engaging with youth organizations, educational institutions, and community leaders, we can contribute to the development of programs that empower young people with the knowledge, skills, and confidence to become active participants in the social economy, social finance, impact investing, and cooperative ecosystems. This includes mentorship opportunities, leadership development programs, and exposure to role models and successful practitioners in these fields.

Additionally, commitments to nurturing broad coalitions and fostering empathy between diverse perspectives creates fertile ground for intergenerational learning. By bringing together individuals from different backgrounds and age groups, we can facilitate the exchange of knowledge, experiences, and best practices, fostering a culture of continuous learning and mutual understanding.

Promoting Lifelong Learning and Skill Development

The rapidly evolving nature of the social economy, social finance, impact investing, and cooperative ecosystems necessitates a commitment to lifelong learning and skill development. The focus on capacity building and community empowerment creates opportunities to develop and promote educational programs that cater to the diverse needs and aspirations of individuals at various stages of their lives and careers.

Through partnerships SETSI can contribute to the development of continuing education programs, skill-building & capacity strengthening workshops, and professional development opportunities. These initiatives can equip individuals with the knowledge and competencies required to adapt to changing circumstances, explore new career paths, and remain competitive and relevant in their respective fields. Furthermore, by advocating for public policies and regulatory environments that support lifelong learning and skill development, this can help create an enabling environment that encourages and incentivizes individuals to continuously invest in their education and personal growth.
Our commitment to learning and innovation extends beyond formal educational settings; it permeates the very fabric of our work and the communities we serve. By nurturing a culture that values curiosity, creativity, and continuous improvement, we can inspire and empower individuals to embrace lifelong learning and contribute to the development of innovative solutions to complex social and economic challenges.


This inclusive and innovative approach to addressing social and economic challenges aligns with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal of Quality Education. By promoting equal access to quality education, fostering innovative and relevant learning opportunities, empowering youth and promoting intergenerational learning we can truly establish communities that advance quality education.