Cocread is created on October 2015. Its storyline is based on a merging story of Ralph Emmanuel Francois (CEO) and Daphnée Charles (COO); two (2) friends from different background and professional paths but similar original entrepreneurship condition. They considered themselves very fortunate to have strong mothers who created upward mobility in their families from nothing due to small businesses and creative mindset. Co-creating development which summarizes into Cocread reflects that culture of creativeness, micro-entrepreneurship, resilience recovery that they have been benefited and they want to give back to Haitian society as strongest leverages to tackle severe poverty and provoke the great escape for million of entrepreneurs.
Ralph ‘s story
From Disaster Risk Reduction to Micro-entrepreneurship
Ralph was born and raised in a disaster-prone urban community (ravine pintade / district of Turgeau) in the center of Port-au-Prince. Since early age, He had constantly faced emergency evacuation. He still kept a vivid memory of his mom putting him in a roof every time it is raining for emergency evacuation; Many times, he witnessed people died in flooding. Her mom had worked for over 25 years in textile industries (underpaid job) and with a pittance she had sent three (3) to school. With her creativeness and her sense of entrepreneurship, she made social mobility a reality for him and invent options where the minimum income could design and support ambitious dreams. She could be farther in business, but disasters undermine her effort to scale-up. Every year in Haiti, disasters still pull back from sustainable economy over 50000 micro-entrepreneurs in Haiti.
Its obsession to Disaster risk reduction brought him to study sociology, because he wanted to play a major and a significant role in disaster-prone communities in order to draw and design actions that could improve disaster-preparedness and resilience for communities. He contributed on the elaboration of the first guidelines regarding the evacuation system in Haiti, and lead a DRR project awarded by Oxfam America as the best community project in Haiti. He went to an Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) exchange program in CATIE ( Centro Agronomico Tropical de Investigacion y Ensenanza )- Turrialba, Costa-rica, in Integrated management of risk with software analysis and technology. He is a volunteer officer for the national system of disaster risk reduction in Haiti. After over 10 years of expertise in integrated management of risk and resilience in Emerging Markets, he and Daphnée co-founded Cocread. He was the First-runner up at the singularity Global Impact Challenge for the Caribbean. He was also a speaker of the first Haiti Tech summit.
Daphnée ‘s story
From early business environment to micro-entrepreneurship
Daphnée is one the lucky 1 % of woman in Haiti, who made it to University. Her mother’s influence on her career. Her mom who can barely write and read has raised five kids up to University, by selling codfish, hareng and fresh spices in public market places. This leads her to strongly believe that entrepreneurship from the bottom is the strongest and the most sustainable option to tackle severe poverty in Haiti. All of her siblings are living and working in Haiti while 84 % Haitian graduates are living outside of Haiti. She studied agro-economics with a scholarship from HELP (Haitian Education Leadership Program), which leads her to Tulk school of Business of Darmouth university and many other exchange studies and programs.
Following the spirit of putting more business, she is committed to make youngsters realize that they could not only search for jobs, they can create jobs for them and for others. She facilitated and pioneered an exchange program in the Netherlands for two young leaders in disadvantaged communities in Haiti, with Favela Street, a Cocread’s partner dedicated to create next generation of women through storytelling and football. She co-founded Action Toward Initiative and Volunteer for Education in Haiti ( ACTIVEH), a social organization promoting volunteering work among the Haitian youth. She is actually the Head of community management of the Haiti Tech Summit, a 13-year initiative of the Global startup Ecosystem which conducts the largest online digital accelerator in emerging markets. She is also the Haiti director of Startup Grind, the largest independant startup community connecting 1,000,000 entrepreneurs in over 250 cities in 100 countries through events, media, and partnerships with organizations and companies and it’s powered by Google for Entrepreneurs.
The challenges behind Cocread’s existence lies in two major observations:
First, Spotlight is usually put on the big companies whist micro-entrepreneurs have been driving the economy of many nations and families; and,
Second, Billion of dollars have been poured to address subsistence economy issue of micro-entrepreneurs in disadvantaged neighbourhoods
We believe that development is being created in many disadvantaged families and parents are creative enough to create social mobility for their loved ones.
it’s just need support and effective channel of expression in a very organized and collective manner to impact more lives and environnement. We want to put people and their needs in creative problem-solving environment and support to cocreate this development and impact their lives for many, instead for a few. We are cocreating and increasing resiliency in a challenged community with reconstruction, art and entrepreneurship.
We are surrounded with ten (10) other entrepreneurs to commit to Cocread’s mission.