Sophomore Sam Faycurry Wins Awards for ‘Better Together’ Social Enterprise

Sophomore Sam Faycurry Wins Awards for ‘Better Together’ Social Enterprise

Sam Faycurry

Learning and organizational change major Sam Faycurry recently won three awards for a proposed social venture to help older adults remain in their homes through home sharing. He developed the business plan for this project, called Better Together, with two Kellogg School of Management students.

Most recently Faycurry and his two fellow team members from the Kellogg won second place in Loyola University’s Quinlan Social Enterprise Competition, earning them $3,000. In this competition, individuals who are interested in developing social enterprises around the world present their business plans to a panel of judges from Loyola’s Quinlan School of Business. 

They also placed second in the Walmart Better Living Business Plan Challenge and won the New Day Summer Internship Award. In total, they have raised $43,000 for their project so far, and they will begin a pilot program this summer.

Better Together will help older adults, who are living alone, remain in their homes by matching them with qualified tenants who will lease spare bedrooms. The tenant will offer help in maintaining the senior’s home in exchange for reduced rent. “This arrangement improves the quality of life for seniors by giving them independence, companionship and security,” says Faycurry, a sophomore.

This quarter Faycurry and his teammates are enrolled in a Kellogg class called Innovation Lab II, where they are advised by professor Linda Darragh. 

“Our goal is to help seniors age in their homes. This is difficult, especially for women who are living alone. They struggle maintaining their home, their families worry about them living alone, and it is often lonely. With our help, they can grow in their homes and avoid going to a retirement home prematurely,” Faycurry says. “We not only save the older adult money, but we also give them a source of added income in addition to the companionship, sense of independence and security, which are the most important.”

“This set-up is also beneficial to the environment, consolidating housing and energy usage, and promotes intergenerational unity. Our idea also serves the needs of our target tenants, who are responsible adults looking for an affordable place to live. However, the more affordable a place, oftentimes it can become unsafe. Our model provides tenants with an affordable and safe place to live.”

“On that note, safety is our top priority. We manage the matching process by posting the senior's home and vetting applicants using background and credit checks, in addition to our own matching criteria, before providing them with the lease and roommate agreement,” Faycurry notes.

Faycurry is eager to share information with the SESP community about his entrepreneurial project because “it shows there are no boundaries to where you can apply your skills and interests — especially for those who have business interests,” he says.

By Marilyn Sherman
Last Modified: 5/1/14