Islamabad, 17 February 2022: UNDP Pakistan and Jazz conclude the second cohort of the SDG Bootcamps—on themes of Education, Health, Climate Change, and Digital Transformation. Implemented by School of Leadership Foundation (SoLF), in the second cohort, 131 social enterprises participated, including 42 women-led initiatives. Four social enterprises emerged victorious.

The winning social enterprises included—Bechlo.pk from Sindh, a multi-vendor app store created for and by women to sell new and preloved products online; Perwaz from Sindh, a healthcare company that provides drone services to deliver medical aid; Crop Care from Sindh, a mobile app that helps farmers detect crop diseases and recommends solutions; and Edibles from Punjab, working to reduce single-use plastic cutlery by introducing sustainable and eco-friendly alternatives.

This second round of boot camps also included one regional boot camp in Islamabad with a total of 25 social enterprises, including participants from Jammu and Kashmir, and Gilgit-Baltistan. Malook Enterprise won the regional boot camp. This social enterprise is creating income opportunities for communities in Gilgit Baltistan by harvesting and selling local organic produce, like herbs, dry fruits, vegetables, etc.

UNDP Pakistan Resident Representative, Mr. Knut Ostby, spoke during the conclusion of the second cohort, “It’s truly inspiring to see the youth, especially young women, opting for social entrepreneurship as a viable career option. The UNDP-Jazz SDG Bootcamps are helping aspiring entrepreneurs to navigate and develop business models. Enhancing the social entrepreneurial ecosystem in Pakistan will not only empower the youth of the country but will also contribute towards achieving Pakistan’s SDG targets.”

Mr. Syed Fakhar Ahmed, Chief Regulatory and Corporate Affairs Officer, Jazz commented, “I would like to congratulate the winners, and I am confident that the insights gained through the boot camps will help social enterprises scale their businesses. We look forward to upcoming cohorts empowering the youth, especially from rural areas, to make a positive impact on the society.”

The winner of the national bootcamp will be provided with an opportunity to join Youth Co: Lab, the largest youth social entrepreneurship movement in Asia and the Pacific co-created by UNDP and Citi Foundation, along with access to mentorship opportunities by Jazz.

Jazz and UNDP Pakistan launched the SDG Bootcamp in December 2020 to promote social entrepreneurship and strengthen the start-up ecosystem in Pakistan. Under this, 20 boot camps will be conducted across the county to train 800 young social entrepreneurs, including 50 percent women, by December 2022.