UNICEF StartUp Lab Accelerator Program 2024 for Social Impact Startups

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Applications are currently being accepted for the UNICEF StartUp Lab Accelerator Programme. Launched in 2019, the UNICEF StartUp Lab is a six-month accelerator initiative aimed at impactful startups and businesses dedicated to advancing the Sustainable Development Goals for children and young people.

Led by UNICEF in Ghana, supported by KOICA, and executed by MEST Africa, the programme offers a distinctive service by providing an intensive, hands-on business acceleration infused with extensive technical expertise and systems knowledge in the social sector. Led by UNICEF experts in Education, Health & Nutrition, Social Policy & Protection, WASH (Water, Sanitation & Hygiene), and Child Protection, this initiative is propelled forward. Participants benefit from individual mentorship, access to a network of UN System partners, prototyping funding, and various other support mechanisms.

Tailored to spark growth and innovation, the programme targets impact-driven startups in Ghana that embrace a technology-centric approach. Aligned with UN Sustainable Development Goals, it places a strong emphasis on social impact and product development while fostering open-source solutions. The initiative is geographically inclusive, actively welcoming diverse ventures from all regions of Ghana, with a special focus on empowering women-led businesses.

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Your startup must have been operational for at least 1 year.
  • Your startup should be a registered business in Ghana (NGOs, foundations, or individuals are not eligible).
  • Technology must be the core enabler of your startup’s business.
  • Your startup’s business model should have a social impact, addressing at least one of the Sustainable Development Goals.
  • Open-source solutions or startups willing to open-source their solutions are particularly encouraged to apply.
  • Encouragement is given for startups with female founders or co-founders to apply.
  • The program is structured to incorporate startups from all regions of Ghana.
  • Startups in the Health Tech, EdTech, Urban Tech, Climate Action, Fintech, and WASH (water, sanitation, and hygiene) sectors are strongly encouraged to apply.

Top of Form

Target Areas:

  • HealthTech
  • EdTech
  • UrbanTech
  • Climate Action
  • Child Protection
  • FinTech
  • WASH (water, sanitation, and hygiene)


  • Each startup is granted funding of up to GHS 32,000 for product development.
  • INVESTMENT: Access to global funding opportunities, including the UNICEF Venture Fund.
  • PARTNERSHIP: Opportunity to connect with an extensive network of UN System partners.
  • GROWTH:  Intense, hands-on practical business acceleration
  • EXPERTISE: Immediate access to resources and experts in social sector programs
  • RESOURCES: Technology perks for participating startups

For More Information,

Application Deadline: February 29th, 2024.

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