Florence Harridan: One Spark Experience And After

June 1, 2014 7 comments Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article

Florence Harridan has earned the reputation of being one of the most unflappably passionate advocates for social progress and engaged betterment programs in the area. There is hardly a cause that doesn't find the comforting, earthy, engaging presence of Florence volunteering and pressing the flesh somewhere in the mix. For Metrojacksonville, Florence shares her real life experience with One Spark, and the connections and opportunities that she is experiencing first hand.

Keeping the Spark Alight
Florence Haridan
Executive Director, Character Counts in Jacksonville

Here we are six weeks out of One Spark and I wonder what has happened to other creators as we work diligently to keep the spark alight. What was the real impact of the event for my fellow creators and what is happenign to bring their ideas to the next level?
Have they recovered from the One Spark hangover?

Hi I am Florence Haridan the executive Director of Character Counts in Jacksonville. The project we presented at One Spark this year is called Conscious Market. Our goal is to collect, distribute and repurpose unused  prepared food that is currently thrown away. We have created a tracking and collection process that will mitigate liability issues that will allow food producers to donate unused food.

We managed to garner the attention of the jury during One Spark and was invited to the pitch deck as top three in innovation. The idea is viewed as a disruptive innovation that has the potential to shift many systems and processes in the food chain.

While we did not win in our category, the blessings from our One Spark adventure continue to unfold. We are methodically following up with the people who gave us their name and contact information because they were enthused by our idea. We are building a team and volunteer base to bring tangible metrics for investors to assess.

We have brought on several new team members, including one of the jurors, Rodrigo Davies from MIT. He is working on our grant writing team, lending expertise in build the case. We are meeting with the Association of Culinary Executives in the coming weeks and have opening discussions with Suddath and The Jacksonville Farmers Market. Our core team Ric Aur of Andromeda Systems Inc. and Amy Calfee of Temerity Creative continue to bring other citical elements to the team, insurance, logistics, legal, trucking…

The ongoing challenge is to keep the project going while maintaining our day to day goals of employing ex-felons in our social enterprise Conscious Eats. We are dedicated to the project and will find the right way to stoke the embers as often as possible to keep it alive.

We are wondering how we can help fellow creators and am considering a gathering to help otherss keep their sparks aglow. Stay tuned as we plan that event and hope you will be add fuel.

photo credit: Michelle Chance-Sangthong

Blessings, F

Florence Haridan
Executive Director
CHARACTER COUNTS! in Jacksonville
4201 Baymeadows Road, Suite 4
Jacksonville, FL  32217
Local:      www.ccinjax.org
National:  www.charactercounts.org
Character is how you act when no one is looking!