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Skoll Foundation: Awards For Social Entrepreneurship

Skoll Foundation

The Skoll Foundation Award grants funds to entrepreneurs who are providing excellent solutions to societal problems. If you are an entrepreneur in this field, apply for this opportunity.

In 1999, Jeff Skoll created the Skoll Foundation to build a sustainable world of peace and prosperity for all. The Skoll Foundation catalyzes transformational social change by investing in, connecting, and championing social entrepreneurs and other social innovators who together advance bold and equitable solutions to the world’s most pressing problems.

They invest in social entrepreneurs and other social innovators who offer a compelling vision, creative solutions, and proven approaches.

Start Your Business in 30 Days Even If You Don't Have An Idea
Start Your Business in 30 Days Even If You Don’t Have An Idea

The Skoll Foundation presents the Skoll Awards for Social Entrepreneurship each year to a select group of social entrepreneurs whose innovations have already had a significant, proven impact on some of the world’s most pressing problems and invests directly in the promise of even more significant impact at scale.

By investing in organizations when an innovation is ripe for accelerated and scaled adoption, the Skoll Awards help unleash social entrepreneurs’ full global potential and reach.

See also: Devland Programme For Start-Ups.


The Skoll Foundation employs a multi-year sourcing process for the Skoll Awards for Social Entrepreneurship. Their goal is to save organizations valuable time and effort while identifying the most highly aligned social entrepreneurs. To that end, they only accept referrals and nominations solicited from the Skoll network of partners and must reject all unsolicited nominations and referrals.

Eligibility For The Skoll Foundation Awards

Social Entrepreneur

The organization is led by a visionary social entrepreneur whose values are embedded in the organization’s culture.

Impact Potential

The organization’s innovation is positioned to effect large-scale policy, behaviour, and infrastructure/systems change and show significant impact already achieved. The organization has a sound and viable business model and a clear plan for achieving long-term growth and sustainability.


The organization has partnerships in place to optimize its model and execute its mission on a larger scale. Therefore, it is a critical factor with local, regional, national, and/or other key players in its ecosystem.


The organization has an approach that fundamentally disrupts an unsustainable and unjust equilibrium to solve social and/or environmental problems.

Issue Area

The organization’s mission addresses a critical and timely issue identified as one of the world’s most pressing problems.

Skoll Leverage

Go from idea to starting your business in 30 days
Go from idea to starting your business in 30 days

The organization will benefit from engaging with the Skoll Foundation by collaborating with Skoll’s network of entrepreneurs, accessing media and fundraising opportunities, and leverage other options provided by Skoll. This requires that the organization actively engage with the Skoll community of social entrepreneurs and thought leaders.

Skoll awardees typically exhibit many of the following characteristics:

  • Led by a visionary, effective social entrepreneur serving as a spokesperson for their issue area.
  • The strong leadership team and board.
  • Clear and unwavering focus on the mission.
  • Sound business model, scalable for greater, systems-level impact.
  • Strong, strategic partnerships.
  • Commitment to measurement, evaluation, and learning.
  • Diversified and mission-aligned funding sources.

Legal structures

To receive a Skoll Award, an organization must be a legally incorporated entity. Skoll will consider nonprofits, for-profits as well as hybrid structures. Organizations that do not have 501(c)(3) public charity status, including organizations based in other countries, will be asked to submit additional documentation at the appropriate time.

See also: SME Recovery Loan Scheme.

What You Stand To Gain From The Skoll Foundation Awards

Each Awardee receives a $1.5 million investment or core support grant from Skoll over three years to scale their work and increase their impact. They also gain leverage through Skoll’s long-term participation in a global community of visionary leaders and innovators dedicated to solving the world’s most pressing problems.

How To Apply

You can contact them here and include your specific request in your message.

Want to start a business and do not know how to start? Visit our resource centre to get our business guides to help you start, market and grow a sustainable business.



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