Why YSI SEA exists

Quick - what is a social, economic or environmental issue that you are concerned about?

Within seconds, you can probably think of a few sustainability-related issues that need to be addressed in the world we live in. Extreme poverty, malnutrition, climate change, income inequality, gender equality, refugee rights etc. might be just some of many issues that come to your mind when you think about pressing issues which need to be solved.

These problems are by no means trivial – they involve the lives and livelihoods of humans and countless other species at a large scale. In the face of such grand challenges, it might be very easy (like really easy) for us to get lost in the complexities and even be paralyzed by the scale of these problems.

Youth and young professionals in our region have the passion and, more than ever, the impetus to solve social, economic and environmental issues in their communities. They are aware of the intricate issues around them and want to take action. Some of these youth might even have many ideas that they want to implement.

However, they are often unsure of where or how to begin. How does one start thinking about or even tackling these complex sustainability issues? How does one create impact with their ideas? These are some things that plague them and paralyze them.

That is why we exist, to empower them beyond the paralysis to take the step forward. We recognize the passion and innovative potential of youth to solve these complex issues. In collaboration with experienced & established professionals, we gather young people across the region and empower them to create impact startups that drive change in our region.

We bridge these gaps by pooling together resources and providing

Community for youths to channel their passion into and continue to be inspired and gain different perspectives from other like-minded individuals.

Frameworks through our 5-month Innovation Programme for youth to translate their ideas into actionable impact start-ups.

Guidance from mentors and experienced practitioners in the field of sustainable development and entrepreneurship to ensure that they are successful in their vision of creating a difference.

We exist to empower Southeast Asian youths to solve the region’s sustainability challenges through a measurable impact.

So how exactly do we achieve our mission of empowering youths?

Translating Passion to Insights: Workshops

We conduct workshops among tertiary institutions and companies on sustainable entrepreneurship with a focus on (1) Energy Transitions, (2) Circular Economy and (3) Future of Food & Agriculture, to nurture their interest in the topic into tangible industry insights and take them a step closer towards achieving a larger system change.

In just under 2 years, we have conducted over 20 workshops with more than 15 different partners in Singapore, Philippines and Indonesia.

Translating Insights to Action: Innovation Programme

Our 5-month fully-funded Innovation Programme aims to generate impact start-ups equipped with actionable solutions to be implemented in Southeast Asia. We believe that an individual’s socio-economic background should not prevent one from being able to make a difference in society.

The 2018 Innovation Programme received 800 regional applicants and generated 6 impact start-ups tackling different areas of sustainability in the region. This year, we received 1265 applicants and 9 start-up teams have been finalized.

Translating Action into Impact: Community & Ecosystem

A programme alone cannot produce meaningful impact. The resources and ecosystem in any sector need to be strong enough for that sector to grow. We aim to grow our impact by developing an ecosystem of investors, companies and like-minded youths to channel resources and ensure that the implemented solutions are refined and scaled for impact.

We believe that those who want to do something for the issues around them should be given the right team, resources, mentors and runway to do so. We are here to to translate passion into impact.