Sonder Initiatives

Published on June 8, 2016 um 02:04

Explain your idea in details:

628, 106. A number which represents the people trying to make both ends meet every single day of their lives in Tondo, Manila, the most populated district of the most densely populated city in the world, Manila, Philippines the birthplace of Sonder Initiatives. With the inescapable cycle of poverty brought about by the lack of education and economic opportunities experienced by the urban poor not only here in Tondo but also in the different mega-cities around the world, our Team came up with a timely and innovative idea that seeks to solve and altogether improve the living conditions of these individuals. The Sonder Iniatives is a social enterprise which aims to generate jobs for those living in crowded urban spaces through the production of polyester products. This is made possible through a machine that could convert polyethylene terephthalate (PET) plastic bottles into polyester cloth which in turn, makes good quality sportswear and caps. Individuals from our partner communities would be then employed in the process of making such goods, at the same time, be educated about the adverse effects of plastic waste to the ecosystem and to empower them to be a part of a global solution by engaging in an economically and environmentally sustainable livelihood. Partnerships with local companies and even international organizations could also be forged in order to bring Sonders products closer to the market and with them, its advocacy of responding to the urgent call presented by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. It is our mission to create a scalable enterprise for our partners enabling them to acquire lifes basic necessities through its ABC (Automatic. Bank. Cooperative.) Business Model. Sonder envisions a world where its communities are livable, its people empowered and its progress promotes inclusive and environmentally-sustainable growth

Expected impact of your idea on sustainable development

After gaining back the capital invested by the Sonder Initiatives, the enterprise shall allot funding for its growth and sustainability. The expansion of the Sonder Initiatives sewing center and the Sonder Bank will improve the operational services of the company. More plastic bottle deposit trucks shall be stationed in key locations around the city where any individual could place their used plastic bottles. It will serve as an effective strategy of promoting the company and its socio-environmetal advocacies. This would also contribute to the increase of the shirt production process. The establishment of the social enterprise to other communities will also set forth, extending to 10 million people and beyond by 2022.

Plans for implementation and sustainability

Automated - Sonder Initiatives will create Plastic Advantage Card (PAC) which can be availed by the people. It contains the cardholders name and account number which will give them access in earning money. Sonder Initiatives will provide a truck with an automated machine where the cardholders can deposit plastic bottles. A plastic bottle, regardless of its size, will be equivalent to one (1) point. The PAC registers the number of points the cardholder earned and through a swipe of the cardholders PAC on the automated machine, the cardholder can view his earned points.
Bank - The earned points can be exchanged into cash through the Sonder Bank. Two (2) points will be equivalent into one (Php1) peso. The bank teller will update the balance of the cardholders Plastic Advantage Card after redemption.
Cooperative - The plastic bottles will be transported to one of the nearby local factories in our partner communities that turn plastic bottles into polyester cloth. After processing, another truck will collect the polyester and transfer the raw material to the Sonder Initiatives Sewing Center.The cardholders can be employed as tailors and seamstresses. These workers will then use the polyester in making shirts.
With the growing awareness of the products substance and with the demand of eco-friendly materials getting stronger, Sonder Initiatives is confident that the market would be extensive and easy to reach by becoming a major supplier of t-shirt printing companies.Sonder Initiatives will have a Return of Investment (ROI) after the sixth month of marketing the polyester shirts. The cardholders will receive revenue from two sources: the redemption of money from earned points in the Sonder Bank and second, the commission from the Sonder Initiatives in manufacturing the polyester shirts. Sonder Initiatives will receive revenue from the production of the polyester shirts.

Your profile

I am Mariah Magallanes, the Founder and CEO of Sonder Initiatives. Along with the team is our CFO, Norberto Sarigumba III, COO, Andrea Ungson and General Manager, Kristine Ponce. We are all first year college students of De La Salle University and last year, my team and I founded Sonder Initiatives through the Hult Prize, solving a case study about Urban Crowded Spaces and to double the income of 10 million people by 2022. Our team was chosen as one of the 12 finalists of the Inaugural Hult Prize at De La Salle University. We were given the chance to pitch in front of esteemed judges including Ramon Del Rosario Jr, CEO of PHINMA Groups, Christian Besler, Co-Founder of Kickstart Ventures, Kenneth Lingan, Country Manager of Google Philippines, Raphael Mijeno, Co-founder and CFO of SALt, Ces Rondario, Co-founder at Impact Hub Manila, Stephanie Gilles, Chairman of the United Architects of the Philippines and Lans Bularan, Sustainable Development Manager of Shell Philippines.

Sonder Initiatives in Tondo, Manila PH

Stage of Idea

conceptual stage, planning stage, start-up stage

Sonder Initiatives Logo

Sonder Initiatives' ABC Business Model

The Team. Credits to Erika So for taking the picture.

Post a comment


August 31, 2016 14:26


Virginia Manaois

August 31, 2016 12:04

Brilliant Ideas... Good Job... We need more youth with the same level of thinking as yours... Fly High!!!

Jama Mangulabnan

August 17, 2016 16:21

Nice job! keep it up

George Sy

August 16, 2016 03:01

Good Luck

wealth come

August 13, 2016 06:34

An inspiration worth being the model of younger generations.

Jenny Mapua Banal

August 13, 2016 04:24

Soar high with your dynamism, inventiveness and brilliant initiative, SONDERS!

July 17, 2016 18:43

Bangladesh is affected by unemployment too. Would love to see your idea spread here. Can my idea be pertinent to your country?

July 17, 2016 16:10

I love your idea and it's compliments my project of empowering farmers with flexible financial services. I will love to have a chat with you.

Whatsapp +2347034208822

E-mail: [email protected]

July 3, 2016 22:43

My idea "Opon-Imo" was nominated for the Youth Citizen Entrepreneurship Competition in the Best Idea 2016 category. Please read my idea at and I would be happy if you support my idea with comments and votes!
You can also use this short link:
You can support my idea by
a) voting for it
b) commenting and giving positive feedback
c) tell your friends about it to do the same.
Thanks for your support!

July 3, 2016 06:14

Reply to: A very noble enterprise concept - Maria Ungson

Good day!

Sonder Initiatives is indeed a noble social enterprise :) Thank you for the support!

July 3, 2016 06:12

Reply to: You guys are brilliant! Keep on being innovative and free flowing of ideas. Good luck and all the best always! - Nanette Buot

Hello Nanette!

Thank you so much for the support! Will keep ourselves innovative for the benefit of everyone :)

July 1, 2016 05:56

Reply to: God bless! - Ophelia

Thank you! Likewise :)

June 29, 2016 04:06

Reply to: What a great idea, Mariah! I believe that Sonder could make a big impact on the world's urban poor! Hope to hear from you soon! - Jan Olavides

Good day Jan!

You are right, Sonder Initiatives aims to become the catalyst of change to the urban poor. Through this kind of enterprise, we plan to alleviate the lives of the people in Tondo, Manila and expand to the other parts of the country and to the world. Thank you for taking interest on Sonder Initiatives!

June 29, 2016 04:04

Reply to: Hi Mariah,
I have cast my vote for you. When you get a moment, please check out my idea and comment, and if you like it, please vote!
Thank you in advance for your time.
Best, LPS - Lakshya Pawan Shyam

Hello LPS,

Thank you for casting your vote on my idea. I was able to check yours and voted as well. Your idea is worth envisioning especially for its specific stakeholders. Good luck to both of our teams.

Best regards,

Althea Morojo

June 25, 2016 15:46

This is such an impressing concept that is just waiting to be implemented.

"Indeed, the sense of urgency behind the drive to save the environment is stronger than ever before."

Gabrielle Reyes

June 24, 2016 08:07

Truly a promising concept! I'm looking forward to more of this and more from you guys. Good luck!

Jackie CaƱiza

June 22, 2016 23:51

It's a great idea and I'm excited to see it implemented!

June 21, 2016 18:41

Good idea. You have my vote! I have an ideal for solid waste management in Ghana as well.
Where will you get the plastic to polyester conversion machine from? Is it sold in the open market?
Is the Initial cost of the start up high or bearable?
What is the demand for polyester made clothing in Manila.

Peter Ungson

June 20, 2016 02:42

This program will help reduce non biodegradable waste which is destroying our environment. Hey it may be expensive now but look at the stuff we are buying, same old shirt and 20 times more expensive because some designer put his name on it. Wake up guys, pitch in and lend a hand to a truly worthy endeavour to help save our environment.

Kyungs Wu

June 19, 2016 13:03

This is such a great idea! I was not aware that this type of technology is possible. Good luck Sonder Initiatives!

Mc Gue

June 17, 2016 14:21

Great idea! Would love to see this social enterprise in effect.

Shela Reyes

June 17, 2016 05:45

A simple step may lead to greater impact to ourselves, environment and country.

Hoping more youth will discovet & enhance their Great Ideas.

Maria Ungson

June 16, 2016 17:12

A very noble enterprise concept

Nanette Buot

June 15, 2016 05:50

You guys are brilliant! Keep on being innovative and free flowing of ideas. Good luck and all the best always!

June 13, 2016 17:14

Hi, you have a good idea there.
I have cast my vote for you!
Please i need you support also and a comment will also help. please check out my idea by clicking "Pwavodi Tanihungoama Joshua" above, and give your valuable comment/advice.

Best Idea Category Do you know that NEEM saves Lives

Also, if you like my idea, PLEASE vote for me!
Thank you in advance for your time.


June 10, 2016 08:59

God bless!

Jan Olavides

June 9, 2016 08:57

What a great idea, Mariah! I believe that Sonder could make a big impact on the world's urban poor! Hope to hear from you soon!

June 8, 2016 02:44

Hi Mariah,
I have cast my vote for you. When you get a moment, please check out my idea and comment, and if you like it, please vote!
Thank you in advance for your time.
Best, LPS