In 2015 we witnessed some dramatic events that drove the world to new heights and also brought the world closer together. The U.S. Embassy in Cuba was reopened, water was discovered on Mars and historic global agreements were reached on climate change and sustainable development goals. It was also a year of confronting some dramatic challenges — deadly earthquakes in Nepal, a refugee crisis from the Middle East and ongoing debates on race relations. The events that drive us forward, and those that hold us back from our full potential, remind us of the power of innovation, inclusion, compassion and civic engagement to build a better world for all. And while the tragic events of 2015 weigh heavily on our hearts and minds, the world we live in today is actually better educated, better fed, healthier and more free. One bright spot is that global poverty has more than halved since 1990 — change is happening! 2015 was a transformative year, and it helped each of us define how we could boldly make a difference in our world and remember the power of collective action in advancing social progress.
To cap off such a momentous year, we at the Case Foundation reflected on some of our own defining moments and the power of partnerships that enabled us to advance our goals. We reviewed the more than 100 pieces written by the Case Foundation team and identified the 15 posts that best define the past year for the Foundation. This list includes pieces that captured milestones, highlighted issues about which we care deeply and championed innovative solutions — all of which reflect our mission to invest in people and ideas that can change the world.
We kicked off the year with a bang, sharing a new look for our website and a wonderful video to inspire us to great things in 2015:
- Welcome to Our New Website! By Allyson Burns and Brian Sasscer
- Are You Ready to Change the World in 2015?
We also reimagined the mission of the Case Foundation through three pillars — Revolutionizing Philanthropy, Unleashing Entrepreneurship and Igniting Civic Engagement — which are the heart of everything we do and where we believe real impact can be made.
- Introducing the Three Pillars of the Case Foundation By Jean Case
2015 was also a year for catalyzing movements, seeing momentum build in some areas and transitioning our involvement in others.
We saw great strides in Impact Investing:
- A New Inning For Impact Investing (UPDATED) By Jean Case
- Social Impact Bonds: Investing in Public-Private Partnerships at the National Level By Sean Tennerson
And worked to catalyze movements in inclusive entrepreneurship, kicking off our Myth of the Entrepreneur series, examining the stories and myths told about entrepreneurship in today’s startup culture:
- Celebrating Inclusive Entrepreneurship at White House Demo Day By Jean Case
- The Myth of the Entrepreneur By Sheila Herrling (And for a bonus, check out the complete series including posts by Sarah Koch, Allyson Burns and Erich Broksas)
Over the summer, we headed to Africa to meet and support incredible social entrepreneurs across the continent:
- Unleashing Entrepreneurship in Africa: Solutions for the World By Allyson Burns, Sheila Herrling and Erich Broksas
And we closed a chapter as we saw UP Global become a part of Techstars:
- A New Path for UP Global By Steve Case
2015 was also a great year to Be Fearless. We launched an updated version of the Be Fearless Action Guide, and we saw so many practitioners embracing the Be Fearless principles this year — taking risks, being bold and failing forward in pursuit of transformative impact in the social sector:
- An Imperative for Nonprofit Boards: The Time is Now to Step Up Your Game By Jean Case
- Be Fearless Spotlight: The West Foundation
We sought to empower young changemakers and unlock the power of Millennials to do good:
- Millennials And The Power Of Influence By Jean Case
- Authenticity, Relevance and the Power of Business as a Force For Good: Inspiration For the 37,000 Changemakers at MCON 2015 By Sean Tennerson
And we closed out the year by celebrating the most generous #GivingTuesday on record:
- 116.7 Million Reasons to Celebrate #GivingTuesday By Jean Case
- This #GivingTuesday, Give the Gift of Listening By Emily Yu
With 2015 now closed, I am keenly aware of the fact that even with all of the strides we have been able to make together over the course of the last 12 months… there is much, much more to be done. That together, we can Be Fearless and build a better world for each other. As we look to the start of a new year, I remain optimistic about the challenges and opportunities that we will face and know that our accomplishments together will reach even greater heights in the coming months. Thank you for coming along with us throughout 2015 and I look forward to sharing more moments of fearless change with you in 2016. Onward and upward!