Published: 4 May 2020

COVID Response Alliance for Social Entrepreneurs 

The COVID Response Alliance for Social Entrepreneurs brings together over 50 leading global organizations to coordinate response for social entrepreneurs as they overcome the significant impacts of COVID-19.

"Social entrepreneurs are battling at the forefront of this pandemic to serve the most vulnerable populations using their ingenuity to confront the problems on the ground. This Alliance will support them with their mission at a time when they are needed more than ever"

—Hilde Schwab, Co-Founder and Chairperson, Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship

What is the COVID Response Alliance for Social Entrepreneurs?

The COVID Response Alliance for Social Entrepreneurs is an unprecedented collaboration between over 50 global organizations to support social entrepreneurs in pooling knowledge, experience and responses to alleviate suffering and advance new models of change for a more inclusive, equitable and sustainable world.

Alliance members currently support more than 15,000 social entrepreneurs helping 1.5 billion people cumulatively in over 190 countries, working to serve the needs of excluded, marginalized and vulnerable groups – many of whom have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic. The alliance also aims to coordinate between member organizations and amplify the support for social entrepreneurs under extreme stress by the pandemic.

"This Alliance continues to strengthen our unwavering mission of sustainable and inclusive progress, which remains critical as business and government shape their response to the current crisis”

— Dominic Waughray, Managing Director, World Economic Forum

Why support Social Entrepreneurs?

The Alliance represents a network of over 15,000 social entrepreneurs, who have impacted the lives of 1.5 billion people cumulatively: protecting livelihoods, mitigating millions of tonnes of CO2, improving access to health, sanitation, education, and energy, driven social inclusion movements for the disabled, homeless, or those with refugee status.

From providing access to food & water to developing mobile community tracing initiatives, the work of social entrepreneurs is even more critical during the COVID-19 pandemic, as they reach those who the market and governments are unable to account for. Social entrepreneurs need our support to continue making the world a better place for us all.

"Social entrepreneurs and their community partners have been working for years to solve market failures and demonstrate more sustainable and inclusive models. These front-line organizations now face bankruptcy and severe constraints while they also innovate and respond to this global pandemic. Through this Alliance, members are committing support for social entrepreneurs to protect decades of work in the impact sector"

— François Bonnici, Head of the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship

How will the Alliance support Social Entrepreneurs?

This Alliance will provide holistic support to social entrepreneurs as they overcome the impacts of COVID19:

  • Joint Action Platform: Aggregate action across impact-first organizations
  • Maximize Support: Identify, coordinate, and maximize the availability of resources
  • Visibility: Highlights available rapid response funding under one umbrella
  • Additionality: Designed not to replace, but to amplify individual responses
  • Existing Channels: Builds on existing funder/grantee relationships for speed

"Dimagi is supporting the front lines, carrying out community-based contract tracing by working with governments and in the USA and Togo to respond to COVID. But we can’t do it alone – social entrepreneurs are mobilising to respond to the myriad of massive needs being exposed by the pandemic. We are thrilled to be represented in this Alliance through Catalyst 2030, so we can help, inform and steer the Alliance towards the needs of social entrepreneurs.”

— Jonathan Jackson, CEO, Dimagi, & Co-Chair, Catalyst 2030 Working Group on COVID-19

Who is a member of this alliance?

60 Decibels, Aavishkaar Group, Acumen, Africa Venture Philanthropy Alliance (AVPA), Agora Partnerships, Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE), Ashoka, Asian Venture Philanthropy Network (AVPN), B Lab, Bertelsmann Stiftung, CASE at Duke University, Catalyst 2030, Co-Impact, Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation, Echoing Green, European Venture Philanthropy Association (EVPA), Euclid Network, Fundación Avina, GHR Foundation, Global Innovation Fund, Global Steering Group for Impact Investing (GSG), Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN), Greenwood Place, IIX, IKEA Foundation, IKEA Social Entrepreneurship, Impact Assets, Impact Hub, International Labour Organization, Johnson & Johnson, KIVA, LatImpacto, Lex Mundi Pro Bono Foundation, Mercy Corps Ventures, Motsepe Foundation, NESsT, Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF), OECD, Open Road Alliance, Rippleworks, Root Capital,, SAP, Schwab Foundation, SDG Impact, Skoll Foundation, Sorenson Impact Foundation, Stichting DOEN, Thomson Reuters Foundation, United States African Development Foundation (USADF), USAID Center for Innovation and Impact (CII), Village Capital/Abaca, Yunus Social Business.

“With this new alliance, we will play a significant role in reducing the vulnerability of social entrepreneurs impacted by the pandemic, across the emerging markets we serve. As a Group we will act as a voice for the Global South, empower social entrepreneurs, enable them to gain access to services that can help them survive the slowdown and be positioned for growth while addressing humanitarian challenges that impact jobs and livelihoods

— Vineet Rai, Founder and Chairman, Aavishkaar Group

How can I help social entrepreneurs?

1. Share the word and support the Alliance using #COVIDAllianceforSocEnts.

2. Share stories of the social entrepreneurs on social media using #TogetherwithSocEnts.

3. Contribute to the, a searchable website to help any entrepreneur in the world struggling due to the economic impacts of COVID-19, to locate cash relief resources in their community.

4. To offer any other forms of support, get in touch with us on

"The economic fallout from COVID-19 could push half a billion more people into poverty. Social entrepreneurs are the de facto social net in many emerging economies. We need to intervene to help them before it's too late"

— Saskia Bruysten, Co-Founder & Chief Executive Officer, Yunus Social Business

How will the Alliance help me as a social entrepreneur?

The Alliance also features a new resource developed by the Center for the Advancement of Social Entrepreneurship (CASE) at Duke University, This dashboard is a searchable database of emergency funds available to non-profit and for-profit entrepreneurs during COVID-19, and contains global capital relief offers worth over $1 trillion.

To send a resource to

How can I partner with the Alliance?

To learn more about partnership opportunities, please contact