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Social impact accelerator to launch pilot
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Elevate, the country’s first social impact accelerator, will launch a pilot program during the first week of July. The accelerator is a collaboration of AltCity, a startup hub, and UNICEF, according to Mounir Nabti, CEO at AltCity.

“The pilot program will initially host five startups that have a social impact aim, with future rounds reaching up to 15 startups,” he said.

Each startup enrolled on the program will receive $50,000 investment, of which $20,000 will be in cash and $30,000 in-kind services including customized training sessions and specialized mentorship, as well as office space at Beirut Digital District.

According to Vanessa Zuaibi, Partnership Manager at Elevate, the program will enroll startups that already have a minimal viable product (MVP) and are addressing one of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), officially known as Transforming our World: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which is spearheaded by the United Nations.

She said: “The program allows potential of ‘for profit’ businesses to have a social mission. It is a unique way for UNICEF and others to think how they deliver services on the ground.”

Zuaibi also said that UNICEF would be interested in being a first time client to the startups.

Elevate in collaboration with UNICEF addresses critical challenges in Lebanon by supporting and launching social companies working on enterprise solutions related to core UNICEF program areas that include water, sanitation & hygiene (WASH), health & nutrition, education, child protection, youth & adolescent development, and basic needs.
Reported by Derek Issacs
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Date Posted: May 12, 2017