Duke-UNICEF Accelerator Program 2021 for African Social Entrepreneurs

Duke-UNICEF Accelerator Program 2021 for African Social Entrepreneurs…How To Apply.

Ready to scale your innovation or enterprise? We are looking for social entrepreneurs tackling the most challenging problems facing children globally. We are currently seeking six social enterprises working specifically on sanitation and hygiene issues in Africa.

Application Deadline: 5th March 2021 at 11:59 pm

About the Award: Water and sanitation are at the core of sustainable development, and the range of services they provide underpin poverty reduction, economic growth, and environmental sustainability. However, in recent decades overexploitation, pollution, and climate change have led to severe water stress in locales across the world. The COVID-19 pandemic poses an additional impediment, impairing access for billions of people to safely managed drinking water, sanitation, and hygiene services – services desperately needed to prevent the virus from spreading.

Now more than ever the world needs to transform the way it manages its water resources and delivers water and sanitation services for billions of people. Urgent action is needed to overcome this global crisis, as it is affecting all countries around the world, socially, economically, and environmentally.

Type: Entrepreneurship

Eligibility: The Duke-UNICEF Innovation Accelerator is open to any impact enterprises, working in or across Africa, that meets the following criteria:

  • Is a nonprofit, hybrid, or for-profit social enterprise
  • Has two founders/executives/senior leaders that can represent the enterprise over the course of the 2-year Accelerator and are comfortable working in English
  • Has strong evidence of impact over at least 3 years and has a plan for how to use the Duke-UNICEF award to scale that impact in the next 3-5 years
  • Deploys a promising sanitation and hygiene product and/or service, innovative supply chain model, business model, or other approach that has potential for widespread, sustainable impact
  • Enterprise or enterprise innovation adheres to UNICEF Innovation Principles
  • Active in any country, or multiple countries, in Africa
  • Preference for social enterprises that have existing working relationship (formal or informal) with UNICEF or a UNICEF country office
  • Preference for a diverse, gender-equitable team

To be Taken at (Country): African countries

Number of Awards: 6

Value of Award:

Over the course of the 2-year Accelerator, selected enterprises will receive:

  • $25,000 unrestricted, one-time grant
  • Personalized coaching from social enterprise experts at Duke University and field experts from UNICEF
  • Bespoke mentoring
  • Customized capacity-building curriculum
  • Duke University student support
  • Access to our broad networks

Accelerator Awardees should anticipate the following as part of their participation:

  • Participate in online communities and webinars
  • Participate in regular calls for coaching, mentoring, and peer learning
  • Participate in the week-long Duke-UNICEF Virtual Forum on Social Innovation, held twice yearly
  • Develop a capacity-building plan for scaling their impact, with support from the Accelerator team
  • Implement and track the progress of a customized capacity-building plan, with support from the accelerator team and other mentors
  • Report relevant program performance and financial data on a semi-annual basis
  • Share insights, promising practices, lessons learned, and other experts with other social enterprises participating in the accelerator

Duration of Award: 2 years

How to Apply: Think you are a good fit? Take our eligibility quiz to find out.

  • It is important to go through all application requirements in the Award Webpage (see Link below) before applying.

Visit Award Webpage for Details

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