January 2024 Edition of Impact Funding, Fellowship, and Acceleration Opportunities

This curated list of funding, fellowship, and acceleration opportunities is tailored to help these businesses thrive and expand their positive influence in the region.
The landscape of opportunities for impact businesses in Asia is more vibrant than ever. In a world increasingly focused on sustainable and socially responsible growth, impact businesses play a crucial role. This curated list of funding, fellowship, and acceleration opportunities is tailored to help these businesses thrive and expand their positive influence in the region.


MIT — Knight Science Journalism Fellowship Program

The Knight Science Journalism Fellowship Program at MIT supports a global community of dedicated and thoughtful journalists specializing in science, health, technology and environmental reporting.
The program is designed to recognize journalists from around the world who demonstrate a high level of professional excellence and accomplishment as well as a long-term commitment to their craft. Journalists from all countries compete on an equal basis and are encouraged to apply.
To be eligible for a KSJ Fellowship, applicants must:
  • Be full-time journalists, whether on staff or freelance. Part-time writers or producers are not eligible.
  • Have at least three consecutive years of experience covering science, health, technology and environmental reporting.
  • Be reporters, writers, editors, producers, illustrators, filmmakers, or photojournalists. This includes work for newspapers, magazines, television, radio, and digital media.
Applicants must not have completed a fellowship of four months or longer during the two years prior to applying for the Knight Science Journalism Fellowship.
Applications for the 2024-2025 Knight Science Journalism Fellowships will open on November 15, 2023 and close on January 15, 2024.

Be Visioneers a global fellowship funded by Mercedes-Benz

BeVisioneers is a clarion call to young innovators. Funded by Mercedes-Benz, it’s a global sojourn that seeks to breathe life into planet-positive projects. This global fellowship equips innovators aged 16 to 28 with the training, expert support and resources to bring their planet-positive projects to life.
To be considered for the beVisioneers fellowship, applicants must apply with an idea for a sustainability project, or already have a sustainability project in the form of a prototype. This year, 500 young eco-innovators aged 16-28 years old will be selected. For this cohort, applications are accepted from the EU, India, Kenya, Mexico, South Africa, South Korea, Switzerland Uganda, United Kingdom and USA
Read more and submit your solution here . For any further questions, please email the organiser at hello@bevisioneers.world.
Application Deadline: 15th January 2024

Femtech Lab’s  Acceleration Spring 2024 Cohort 

The 12-Week Program Is Just The Beginning. The FemTech Lab community is going to support your startup at every step of the way. As a FemTech Lab graduate, you get lifetime access to our alumni network, expert mentors, and investors. This a 3 month programme for female-founded tech startups & founders building products for women’s health, wellness & empowerment; such as software, diagnostics, and products for:
  • Female specific health issues such as fertility & birth control, menstruation & period care products, menopause, chronic conditions & hormonal disorders, pelvic health, pregnancy & post pregnancy, breast feeding, sexual wellness.
  • Emerging health spaces that recognise gender specific healthcare, wellness & mental health such as osteoporosis, breast cancer, autoimmune conditions, stroke, thyroid issues, chronic fatigue, anxiety, and depression.
  • Products that empower women: such as personal finance and education.
Uniquely designed for the strong-minded, ambitious and mission-driven entrepreneurs unlocking the blue ocean of women’s health & wellness. The accelerator program runs from March to June 2024.  
The application process is as follows:
Round 1: Fill in this application form
Round 2: First round of interviews with our Admission Panel
Round 3: Second round of interviews with the FemTech Lab Founders
Result: You’re in! 🙂 We look forward to learning more about your company!
Application Deadline: 28th January 2024; more info here.

The 2024 Entrepreneur For Resilience Award 

The 2024 Entrepreneurs for Resilience Award will support social entrepreneurs working on a hybrid delivery model to improve low-income people’s access to quality primary healthcare in low- and middle-income countries.
The application period runs from 12 December 2023 through 23 January 2024.
Only applications submitted in English and before the deadline will be considered. More information here

27th grant cycle the UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women (UN Trust Fund)

The UN Trust Fund is inviting civil society organizations with proven expertise in ending violence against women and girls to submit project concepts to end violence against marginalized women and girls. Applications from women’s rights, women-led, constituent-led and small organizations are strongly encouraged and will be prioritized. Partnerships with smaller, local and grassroot women’s and girls’ rights organizations are also encouraged, with up to 4 implementing partners.  
Civil society organizations can apply for grants between USD 150,000 to USD 1,000,000 for four year-year grants. This call encourages applications from smaller, local organizations through a dedicated small grants funding modality (between $150,000 – $250,000) that provides additional core funding.  
This year’s call has two funding windows:  
  1. A General Window: Addressing violence against marginalized women and girls and those experiencing intersecting forms of discrimination; and 
  2. A Special Window: Addressing violence against women and girls affected by crisis. 
Multi-country proposals will also be considered, up to 10 countries, with a proposed impact beyond national level.
The annual Call for Proposals document is available in the six UN official languages (Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish). Applications can only be submitted in English, French or Spanish.  
The application is open from 10 December 2023 – 1 February 2024 (2.00 pm New York time (EST)). All applications need to be submitted in the Grants Management System

World Justice Challenge 2024

The World Justice Challenge is a global competition conducted by the World Justice Project (WJP) to identify, recognize, and promote good practices and high-impact initiatives that protect and advance the rule of law. This year’s Challenge theme is “The Rule of Law Foundation of Democracy” and is dedicated to addressing pressing rule of law concerns that underpin democratic resilience and renewal. To learn more about this theme, please click here.   
Cash awards ($20,000 USD) will go to five initiatives that show demonstrable results and promising prospects for future progress and replication and/or scaling.
Awards will be made in the following categories:
  • Ensuring that electoral processes and transitions of government power are subject to the law
  • Building citizen trust in justice institutions and guaranteeing that justice systems are independent, impartial, accountable, transparent, and ethical  
  • Protecting free media and a robust, trustworthy information ecosystem in the face of new challenges posed by 21st century technological change  
  • Strengthening young people’s engagement with and commitment to rule of law and democracy processes and institutions
  • The U.S. Building Trust Prize for the project from the United States that demonstrates exceptional impact in one or more of the above categories  
Application Deadline: 31st January 2024

100X Impact Accelerator Powered by LSE 

If you’re a changemaker with a social venture burning with purpose and potential, you’re in the right place. We’re all about fostering positive global change, and we welcome applicants from various backgrounds and corners of the world. We’re looking for ventures with a clear social or environmental mission, a scalable model, and a team ready to change the world.
You MUST fit the following eligibility criteria:
  • Impact-first venture – may be structured as a non-profit or a for-profit
  • Can be registered and/or operating from anywhere in the world
  • Delivering impact within at least one of our eight Impact Areas  
  • Impact achieved to date is reaching at least 10,000 end-users via either a direct B2C model or an indirect B2B or B2G (government) model 
  • Operating with a team of 4 or more full-time paid employees 
  • Raised at least USD 100,000 in capital from any source 
  • You are not applying on behalf of a government body, grantmaking foundation, financing intermediary, or similar entities
Cohort 3 Application ends on Tuesday 30th January 2024

The Van Tienhoven Foundation for International Nature Protection

The Van Tienhoven Foundation for International Nature Protection is set to open its next funding cycle, offering small grants of up to $10,000 to qualified not-for-profit organizations outside the Netherlands. These grants focus on supporting the conservation of ecosystems and their living organisms.
Key Criteria for Funding:
– Project Timeline: Grants are designated for projects that have not yet commenced and are expected to span a maximum of two years.
– Geographical Focus: The foundation prioritizes projects set to be implemented in developing countries, aligning with its mission to support global conservation efforts.
– Impact: Special consideration is given to projects that have the potential to effect direct changes in environmental policy and practice.
Application Window:
Opening and Closing Dates: The call for applications will open on January 1, 2024, and will close at midnight CET on January 31, 2024. This time frame allows organizations to prepare and submit their proposals to meet the foundation’s criteria.
The Van Tienhoven Foundation remains committed to fostering effective conservation efforts globally, especially in regions where resources are most needed to protect and sustain natural ecosystems and biodiversity.

The 5th Edition of The Sustainability Open Innovation Challenge 

The fifth edition of the Sustainability Open Innovation Challenge, organised by Enterprise Singapore, unites industry partners and seeks innovative minds from all over the world to devise sustainable solutions spanning various sectors. These solutions will have a local and regional focus before being scaled globally. Industry partners present distinct challenge statements under these key themes: Climate Change, Green Buildings, Sustainable Agriculture & Trade, and Sustainable Materials. Prizes include over S$3,000,000 in support, including S$75,000 from Hexagon Group AG, as well as funding and real-world testing facilitated by industry pioneers.
Application ends on Tuesday 31th January 2024. Click here to learn more

The Liveability Challenge by Temasek Foundation & Eco-Business 

The Liveability Challenge by Temasek Foundation & Eco-Business is looking for breakthrough innovations that can decarbonise and reduce greenhouse gas emissions in a commercially viable and scalable way. The winners will be awarded with S$2 million in project funding.
The former editions of The Liveability Challenge gathered over 600 solutions globally, allocating S$2.6 million in funding for innovative sustainability solutions. The 2024 edition will maintain this tradition, featuring two grand prizes of S$1 million each for the winners in the Climate Change and Food Security tracks. The grand finale is scheduled for April at Ecosperity 2024.
Application ends on 18 February 2024. Learn more and join The Liveability Challenge 2024 here

The GSMA Innovation Fund for Humanitarian Challenges

As global humanitarian needs continue to rise, there is an increasing demand to respond with innovative, impactful and scalable solutions powered by mobile and digital technology. On 11 December, the GSMA opened the GSMA Innovation Fund for Humanitarian Challenges. The Fund will provide grants as well as additional non-financial and technical support to projects that leverage mobile and digital technology to pilot and scale solutions that address humanitarian challenges in low- and middle-income countries. The specific objective of this new Fund is to test innovative use cases, partnerships, and business models that can improve access to sustainable digital-enabled solutions for those who are affected by – or vulnerable to – humanitarian challenges.  
image by GSMA
The Fund is open to applications from for-profit small and growing enterprises (commercially viable start-ups, small and medium enterprises, and social enterprises with up to 250 employees).
Successful projects will receive a grant of between £100,000 and £250,000 to scale their innovation over a 15 to 18 month period.
Application Deadline: 12th February 2024

Pioneer Facility, powered by Nexus for Development 

Nexus for Development offers an impact fund for SMEs engaged in low-carbon, clean water, energy, and waste management projects in Asia. Eligible and scalable SMEs can apply for up to $500,000 in debt financing through the Pioneer Facility fund.  
To be eligible for the Pioneer Facility loan, your social enterprise must meet all the following requirements:
1. Services and Technology
Offer solutions/ technologies in clean water, energy, sanitation, waste management, sustainable agriculture; examples include but not limited to clean cooking, solar, biogas digesters, water purification, waste-to-energy, biochar
2. Geography
Operating in Southeast Asia
3. Impact
Directly benefit low-income and underserved communities, able to demonstrate social, environmental as well as gender lens impact
4. Business Stage
Revenue generating, growth phase with a clear business plan, a track record of 2+ years and ready to scale
Applications are reviewed year round, The DD process will take approximately 2-3 months depending on the size of the loan request.

Southeast Asian Ocean Impact Film Grant 

Calling all Southeast Asian filmmakers! Applications are now open for our newly launched Southeast Asian Ocean Impact Film Grant!
Embracing the transformative power of storytelling to heighten awareness and spur action for ocean preservation, Coastal Natives has established a dedicated fund to support impactful ocean narratives. This grant, offering up to USD 10,000, is available to both emerging and established filmmakers with a deep commitment to environmental conservation. It’s an opportunity to delve into the rich tapestry of the region’s cultures, ecosystems, and the vital link between humanity and the ocean.
Simply refer to Coastal Native’s application pack for instructions and we will get back to you with feedback. Be prepared to share your story concept, visual treatment and how your film aims to make a meaningful impact. Shortlisted applications will be reviewed by a panel of experts in filmmaking, film distribution and marine conservation. The selected filmmakers will not only receive financial support, but also mentorship and a chance to showcase your work at top-notch film festivals.
Applications are reviewed year round.
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