Social Forest – An example of the growing social business paradigm


by Tandem Social

Social Forest is a company founded in Catalonia that exemplifies the new model of social companies that are being born and contrast the traditional income-focused companies’ model prevailed until now. The old business paradigm is falling and is being replaced time to time by entrepreneurs like Joachim Englert, the Social Forest’ founder, that are more conscious about what the society and the environment really require on the part of businesses. This new companies focused its business model on mitigate social needs while taking care and respecting the environment, leaving on a second place the pure economic aspects of the old business model.

Social Forest is aimed at the formation and job-placement of youth at risk of social exclusion through jobs related to forest management and forestry practices. This two dimension ways of planning allows the company to offer high quality forest management services as well as it contributes to social cohesion and professional training for young people in need. Social Forest defends sustainable development capable of reconnecting society with the rural environment and promotes the use of clean energy. Its different services and specialties addressed the integrated management of forests from the protection and sustainable use of environment as well as promoting the use of biomass as an energy source, creating in this way a green cycle reusing wastes to generate clean energy. This is how nature works, where the concept of waste (a human invention) is non-existing because all is transformed and used for a new purpose.


social forest

This ambitious and innovative project is supported and financed by the Social Project of the Catalan bank named La Caixa and is working, for the moment, in Catalonia and in the federal state of Baden-Wüttemberg (Germany) but Joachim Englert’ intention is to take full advantage of the recent-raised 4 Motors Program, a project that comprises the main four economic forces in Europe (Catalonia, Baden-Wüttemberg, Lombardia and Rhone-Alpes) to cooperate and fully support medium and small enterprises, in order to extend his project at its maximum.
At its beginnings this project creates five new jobs but it is estimated that, at least, 30 jobs can be created in a medium future. The recent expectations of the entrepreneur are to consolidate the project (which is a hard task in the world of social business), be an example for other communities and regions, and finally internationalize the idea to other European countries.
In conclusion we could say that social initiatives like Social Forest are being born time to time because people are being more and more conscious that the old business model is not useful anymore for human beings and this is allowing that new model ideas targeted in social cohesion, environmental care and green use of energies are raising and letting growth by financial institutions that support courageous entrepreneurs like Joachim Englert, who is a good example that we could leave the world in a better place than we found it if we have the firm decision to do it.