Press Releases


This Mothers’ Day, imagine a world without moms… Challenge winners announced!

Maternal health is one of the most pressing problems in our world. What would happen if a group of creative minds banded together to spread awareness around this issue and make it obvious?

We asked this question in our most recent Search for the Obvious challenge on maternal health. After combing through submissions, the judges have spoken. We’re proud to announce the challenge winners, who have creatively shown the world why moms truly matter:

We were impressed by the originality and diversity of all submissions. But most of all, we were struck by the depth of passion each contributor showed for elevating this issue in the public eye. Watch the winning video below, which will appear on the YouTube homepage this Mothers’ Day (thanks YouTube!).

Other winning submissions included creative print advertisements, essays, guerilla marketing campaigns, and Tweets – some of which are featured below. Our hope is that these videos, images, and messages will work their way around the web and continue to stimulate people to think about the importance of moms in our lives. So let’s band together this Mother’s Day, and promote an issue that is very real to all of us. Here are some specific ways you can take action:

  1. Donate to Acumen Fund investee, LifeSpring’s GlobalGiving page and sponsor a safe childbirth in India.
  2. Tell your mom or any mom you love her by sharing the winning video: – A group of sponsors will each donate a penny for each view the video receives in May. Proceeds will be donated to Christy Turlington Burns’ organization, Every Mother Counts.

Winning tweet:

More than 1,000 mothers each day give their life while giving life. 8/10 deaths could be easily prevented. Pls RT!   [Click here to retweet!]

Crafted by Jason M. Burke.

Winning advertisement:

Winning ad by Daniel Paredes

Finally, we extend many thanks to our co-sponsor, ABC’s initiative, Be the Change: Save a Life, and our media partner, GOOD Magazine.

James Wu is Curator of Search for the Obvious and a Senior Associate in Business Development at Acumen Fund.


Reflections on the India Fellows Seminar

Each year, the India Fellows Program brings together up to 20 emerging leaders from different regions, sectors, and socio-economic backgrounds in India. During the fellowship year, Fellows remain in their jobs and meet every 6-8 weeks throughout the year for 4 seminars and 2 collaborative projects, each about a week long. As the India Fellows Associate, Jacqui is responsible for supporting all aspects of the program recruitment, logistics, marketing and strategic planning. Below, Jacqui reflects on the first seminar, Foundations of Leadership. You can read more about the fellowship program here[Read More]

Adaptive Leadership in Action: Addressing Cultural Norms & Giving Women a Voice

In the fall of 2013, +Acumen launched the course Adaptive Leadership: Mobilizing for Change in partnership with the Cambridge Leadership Associates. This course is for anyone who wants to become more effective at leading their organization through change. Below, one of the course participants shared her story about how this course impacted her work and ability to affect change. [Read More]

Making Sense of Social Impact in Action: The Value of Educating Our Youth

At Acumen, one of the most common questions we get is how we measure social impact. Our newest +Acumen course – Making Sense of Social Impact: Acumen’s Building Blocks for Impact Analysis. – will provide an entry point for how to think about impact and we’ll share frameworks that help us define what to measure and why. Makoto Matsuura, founder of cobon a not-for-profit focused on youth education in Jakarta, Indonesia and Osaka, Japan, took a pilot version of this course and shared his reflections with us. [Read More]

Good news for philanthropists in the U.K. and Europe

We are excited to announce that Acumen now holds a CAF Charitable Trust in the United Kingdom. CAF, the Charities Aid Foundation, is a registered U.K. charity. By donating to Acumen through CAF, you can use Gift Aid if the amount of Income Tax and/or Capital Gains Tax you’ve paid for the tax year in which you make your donation is at least equal to the amount of basic rate tax  [the charity or Community Amateur Sports Clubs (CASCs) and any other charities or CASCs] you donate to will reclaim on your gift. CAF will reclaim 25% Gift Aid from HM Revenue & Customs and pass this through to Acumen.  The donor can claim higher rate tax relief (for more information, please refer to CAF’s online resource, What Is Gift Aid?). [Read More]

d.light Leaders Named 2014 Social Entrepreneurs of the Year

We are thrilled for our portfolio company d.light and Donn Tice, Chairman and CEO, along with cofounders Ned Tozun, President, and Sam Goldman, Chief Customer Officer, for being named Social Entrepreneurs of the year 2014 by the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship. d.light is a for-profit social enterprise that manufactures and distributes solar lighting and power products with primary markets in the developing world, today announced that d.light, along with 37 other individuals and organizations in the 2014 class, will be fully integrated into the events and initiatives of the World Economic Forum. [Read More]