Guide to Australia’s Social Impact Incubators and Accelerators Released
4 September 2018 at 5:35 pm
It is hoped a guide assisting Australian social entrepreneurs to find incubator and accelerator programs will build further awareness of social enterprises and drive social impact in the community.
Social Change Central co-founder Jay Boolkin said while there were a growing number of social impact incubator and accelerator programs available, awareness of the programs appeared to be lacking.
“We are frequently getting inquiries from social entrepreneurs about accelerator programs that focused on, or are open to, social impact startups” Boolkin said.
This prompted Boolkin and co-founder Anne Lennon to release a unique guide profiling the 41 programs currently activate for social entrepreneurs in Australia.
“We hope that, used together with the Social Change Central opportunities portal, it will be a useful practical resource that will assist social entrepreneurs to navigate the current ecosystem to find the critical support they need,” he said.
Boolkin told Pro Bono News incubator and accelerator programs were a great way to help social entrepreneurs develop their skills and build networks, while also holding them accountable for what they did – or didn’t do.
“We believe these programs play an important role in driving awareness of social enterprises and supporting those actively seeking to build financially sustainable businesses whose purpose is to create positive change and drive impact,” he said.
It is estimated the programs listed in the guide have supported more than 3,500 new enterprises, and have an average length of 15 weeks.
Lennon said she knew from talking to Australian social entrepreneurs that identifying, researching and comparing programs was difficult, “placing a drain on what are often very limited resources”.
“A core objective of the guide is to bring the key information together into one comprehensive and accessible resource, so that social entrepreneurs can easily hone in on the programs that best suit their organisation’s needs and then make a faster and more informed decision,” Lennon said.
The co-founders expressed hope that the guide would evolve over time to provide more detailed guidance and greater transparency to social entrepreneurs regarding the relative performance of programs.