Prof. Muhammad Yunus was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by the European University of Tirana in Albania on 22nd January 2013, for his outstanding contribution to poverty reduction in the world through his development and implementation of microfinance as well as for his pioneering work in the field of social business. By accepting the award, Prof. Yunus urged the young people to imagine the seemingly impossible and never think that a problem cannot be solved, since only by imagining that omething can be done, does one even begin to attempt to achieve it. â€œThatâ€™s the human spirit!â€ said Prof. Yunus.
Later, on the occasion of Albania Social Business Day 2013, Prof. Yunus launched the Albanian translation of his book â€œBuilding Social Businessâ€. The publication of an Albanian version of this book is timely since the Social Business Movement of Albania was recently launched. This Movement, spearheaded by Yunus Social Business, seeks to create the first wave of new social businesses in Albania, and to generate awareness and enthusiasm for the idea across Albanian society.
On 23rd January 2013, Prof. Muhammad Yunus met Socialist Party Chairman and Leader of the Opposition Mr. Edi Rama. Prof. Yunus spoke about the concept of social business and his personal experience in Bangladesh and elsewhere, and explained the activities of Yunus Social Business in Albania. Prof. Yunus and Mr. Rama concurred about the importance of psychology, imagination and ownership of an idea in creating social change: Mr. Rama recounted how, as Mayor of Tirana, a buildings beautification programme had a real and immediate impact on peopleâ€™s behaviour, and brought palpable positive economic and social change. Mr. Rama enthusiastically welcomed the creation of a Social Business Movement in Albania, and pledged to include these ideas in his partyâ€™s programme.