ygap is an international development organisation that supports early-stage social impact ventures with locally-led solutions to local problems. We believe in the power of entrepreneurship as an effective and sustainable way to provide opportunities for people to lift themselves out of poverty and disadvantage.

Our work is two-fold; we find, accelerate and support the growth of impact ventures led by local entrepreneurs who deeply understand the unique challenges of their communities and are best placed to develop solutions, and we support system-level change to create an entrepreneurial ecosystem that is equipped to support the success of these ventures.

We have 12 years of expertise working directly with impact ventures across the world, as well as within the entrepreneurial ecosystems that support them. To date, we have run 48 programs and supported 552 enterprises, which have gone on to provide opportunities for 1,295,411 people to lift themselves out of poverty or disadvantage. We currently support ventures across Africa, South Asia, the Pacific Islands and Australia. ygap has offices and local teams that lead our programs in each area that we work. We also support impact entrepreneurs indirectly in other regions through the ecosystem development work we perform through collaborations.

What we do

We partner with governments, foundations and private sector organisations to run programs that support the growth of sustainable impact ventures. We back local entrepreneurs who deeply understand the unique and systemic challenges that their communities face, and are therefore best placed to develop contextualised, innovative solutions that work. We find, accelerate and support their growth.

We collaborate with governments, foundations, investors, academia, private sector organisations and nonprofits to deliver projects that drive the growth of an accessible, inclusive, and equitable global entrepreneurial ecosystem that can better support entrepreneurs to reach their full potential.

We design and deliver powerful campaigns that raise awareness and funds to address critical issues relating to poverty that exist in our systems.

Our vision

Building a sustainable, accessible, inclusive and equitable future.

ygap Collaborations

ygap Collaborations is the consultation and collaboration arm of ygap. We work with a wide range of stakeholders including development agencies, governments, foundations and the private sector to realise and further develop their entrepreneurial support and impact strategies.

We are experienced practitioners with over a decade’s expertise working with impact ventures and leading large collaborations. We are always evolving to respond to the needs of the entrepreneurs and stakeholders we work with, as well as the local contexts we operate within.

Given the international nature of our work and the context of COVID-19, we are able to deliver most programs online. 

Where we play

Geographically, we currently work across Africa, South and Southeast Asia, Australia and the Pacific Islands. That being said, we’re open to collaborations outside of those regions.

In terms of focus areas, we can collaborate with you to achieve outcomes in:

Education and Training

Equipping current and future entrepreneurs with the skills to launch and grow their impact ventures through the provision of education and training, equipping them with the skills to become the leaders of today, and tomorrow.

Support systems

Creating and upholding systems that support local impact entrepreneurs to develop and grow their businesses. This includes accelerator programs, incubator programs, mentors, advisors, and other capacity building activities.

Human Capital

Growing the talent pool available to launch, grow and scale impact ventures.

Accessible Markets

Increasing the accessibility of markets to entrepreneurs in order to achieve and grow sustainable revenues.

Accessible Finance

Supporting funding bodies and financial providers to make their products more accessible to early-stage ventures, and trialling new financial instruments for under-served communities.

Gender equity, accessibility and inclusion

Applying a gender lens to operations, programs, products and services to advance gender equality.

Measurement, Evaluation & Learning (MEL)

Establishing and improving MEL systems to monitor and assess the effectiveness of impact interventions.

Examples of our work

ygap was one of three primary implementing partners working with the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) to deliver a capacity building program for 31 incubators and accelerators across Asia Pacific. The scope of work included one-on-one mentorship, training delivery and resource development, including the creation and delivery of a gender and Power thematic.

ygap partnered with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s ‘Scaling Frontier Innovation‘ initiative to deliver an integrated support and training program for entrepreneurs and entrepreneur support organisations across the Pacific Islands. The program included technical assistance, mentoring, relationship building and funding disbursement, and was tailored to the specific needs of each organisation to build a context-specific COVID-19 response.

ygap partnered with the Sasakawa Peace Foundation to develop an interactive and comprehensive toolkit to guide accelerators and incubators  through the process of applying a gender lens across their operations and programs. The toolkit provides practical strategies and frameworks for entrepreneur support organisations to increase equity, accessibility and inclusivity for all genders at every level of their work.

ygap was commissioned by an independent agency to compile a research report addressing the barriers faced by refugee entrepreneurs in accessing support networks and resources to grow their businesses in Victoria, Australia. The process included interviews with the refugee entrepreneur community, the facilitation of co-design sessions and the delivery of a paper underlining the challenges and barriers faced, and a suite of recommendations for further action by entrepreneur support organisations to better service this group.

ygap coordinated a series of rapid-response activities in the Pacific Islands, Australia, Bangladesh, Kenya and South Africa to support impact entrepreneurs in responding to the effects of  COVID-19. This included comprehensive ecosystem surveys, developing a suite of resiliency toolkits, and deployment of a series of ‘Re-Accelerator’ programs to support existing businesses through the pandemic.

The services we offer

We believe in the power of collaborations to create shared value and sustainable impact. Our collaboration ethos has three main components:

  • Collaborative and integrative relationships that encourage shared decision-making, mutual accountability, and a commitment to creating measurable impact.
  • Working with organisations that create change in their own right, but who also recognise the potential of good partnerships to achieve more effective and impact driven outcomes.
  • Openness and willingness to tackle big challenges that will result in meaningful and long-lasting change.

Since 2008, we have developed, delivered, tested and refined programs to support impact entrepreneurs across Africa, Asia and the Pacific. We have a proven methodology, as well as a strong track record and recognised expertise in supporting diverse entrepreneurs to grow their ventures.

We have also delivered large scale programs of work in collaboration with government, development, foundation and private sector partners, where we’ve used our expertise and global team to design and deliver projects that address gaps in markets and ecosystems.

We can support you with:

  • Strategic planning around social impact, innovation, entrepreneur engagement and ecosystem development;
  • Design and delivery of programs of work that aim to address social and environmental issues through entrepreneurship;
  • Design and delivery of programs that aim to create more accessible, inclusive and equitable entrepreneurial ecosystems in the areas in which we play (as above);
  • Capacity building for entrepreneur support organisations
  • Design and delivery of accelerator/incubator programs to support the growth of early-stage impact ventures;
  • Design and delivery of bespoke entrepreneurship educational programs and events (school programs, intrapreneurship initiatives, hackathons, convenings etc);
  • Development of tailored entrepreneurship content (curriculum, runsheets, templates, tools and slides);
  • Facilitation training and/or the provision of facilitators for entrepreneurship programs;
  • Sourcing and coordination of support networks (mentors, experts, etc.);
  • Market, user, contextual and entrepreneurship ecosystem research;
  • Theory of change and Measurement and evaluation framework development;
  • Gender lens application to make your activities more accessible, inclusive and equitable;
  • Context specific knowledge and ‘boots on the ground’ to lead or support program design and delivery (note – this is only offered for countries in which we operate).

Together, we can collaborate to design and deliver programs that create measurable, meaningful and sustainable impact.

Why work with us

  • We are a team of highly experienced practitioners and problem solvers.
  • We care about context. We have experienced, local teams and networks in the regions in which we work. Our local teams are capable, committed, connected and have a deep knowledge of their local context.
  • Our work is driven and informed by the people we work with and for. We’re adaptable and believe the best solutions are tailor-made to meet a need, and developed locally.
  • We strive for excellence, continuously critiquing and improving our work to ensure we achieve long lasting impact.
  • We’re committed to holding ourselves accountable by measuring
    our impact.
  • We’re willing to challenge the status quo and embrace innovation in our operations, collaborations and in the enterprises we support.
  • We invest in sustainability.
  • We apply an intersectional lens to our work and continuously improve how we work to make it more accessible, inclusive and equitable.

Contact us

We’d love to hear from you!

For more information on our past and current work, and to discuss how we might be able to work together, please contact:

Audrey Jean-Baptiste
Program Director, ygap Collaborations
+61 477 732 975

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