Climate change is the world's most pressing challenge causing a wide range of unprecedent damage on humanity and nature. To preserve our Earth we need social entrepreneurs crafting innovative circular models and impactful solutions to build an inclusive and sustainable future. 

With the Impact Programme 2020, Ashoka, Accenture & ABN AMRO are co-creating a unique Belgian acceleration programme that nurtures collaboration between social entrepreneurs and business.

Through this cross-sector partnership we aim to maximise system changing impact by fostering solutions in the field of circularity and climate change.  

Therefore, we will convene 10 social entrepreneurs in the field of circularity and climate change to take part in an interactive, practical learning experience that champions collaboration, inspires innovation, and builds momentum for change.

From individual coaching offered by professionals to collective seminars with experts in the field, 10 organizations tackling climate change will have the opportunity to review their business model enabling them to increase their impact and create system-change.


We’re looking for social entrepreneurs, having impact in Belgium, who have an innovative solution, a strong team and a proven environmental/social impact.  

We want to support organizations with the potential and motivation to grow their impact, envision system-change and show a willingness to co-create innovative environmental solutions with corporates.  


  1. Work on a topic in a field of Circularity and/or Climate Change 

Does the solution have a measurable impact on climate change and circularity in Belgium? 

  1. Innovative nature of the project

Has your organisation developed a truly system-changing approach or is it spreading a truly system-changing approach from another country to Belgium? Do similar approaches exist in Belgium already? 

  1. Current and prospective social and environmental impact of the project

Is there, on a local scale, a proven impact of the (pilot) project? Are there clear objectives and is there potential to scale up? 

  1. Potential and creativity of the development strategy

Is the action plan coherent? Does it present a high growth potential? Is the vision of the future clear? 

  1. Entrepreneurship and availability of the project leader

The Impact Programme is very demanding in terms of time. Will the project leader be available to participate? 

  1. Project supported by a motivated team

Is the team supporting the project highly motivated? Is it ambitious?  

  1. Maturity of the project and link with Belgium

You have either operated in Belgium for at least one year or you are bringing an impactful approach from another country to Belgium. 

     8. Will to co-create with corporate actors?  

You have a willing- and openness to collaborate with the private sector?  

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In the period from March to June the participants will benefit from Accenture’s, ABN AMRO’s and Ashoka’s expertise to develop and execute a system change strategy for disruptive long-term impact through: 

  • Three Seminars based on Ashoka’s publication: “The seven key questions you should ask yourself as a social entrepreneur“ (led by subject matter experts from the partners and the Belgian eco-system on circular economy, Ashoka Fellows, business leaders and Impact Investment specialists) 

  • Intense, individual, weekly coaching by professional coaches that will support participants to structure their business model and accelerate their development.  

  • Invitations to co-creation opportunities with Accenture’s & ABN AMRO’s internationally active partners 

  • At a final pitching event, awards for the most impactful organisations containing follow-up support after the programme provided by Accenture & ABN AMRO 

Beyond this there are constant opportunities for participants to:  

  • Gain insights into thinking about impact from a systemic perspective and how to scale the participant’s impact up, out and deep. 

  • Get access to subject matter experts from ABN AMRO, Accenture & Ashoka 

  • Access to Ashoka’s global network of social entrepreneurs, many of them working on circular solutions.  

  • Connection to a European network of investors and impact funds.

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  • Call for Changemakers from January 8th to February 10th (midnight) 

  • Selection jury: February 17th 2020 

  • Introduction to the Impact Programme for social entrepreneurs: March 5th 2020 (afternoon)

  • Kick-off of the programme: March 10th (evening)

  • Seminar 1: April 2nd and 3rd

  • Seminar 2: May 14th and 15th

  • Seminar 3: June 19th

  • Individual coaching: From March to June 

  • Co-creation opportunities with private sector actors: March to June 

  • Presentation in front of the final jury: September 2020



Impact Programme 2018

30+ Social Entrepreneurs are Impact Programme Alumni including 5 Ashoka Fellows

Alberto Alemanno

Ashoka Fellow since Jun 2019

Geertrui Serneels

Ashoka Fellow since Apr 2017


Emilie Schmitt

Ashoka Fellow since Jul 2018

Emilie Meessen

Ashoka Fellow since Jul 2010

Marjan Gryson

Ashoka Fellow since Nov 2015