The Australia ASEAN Emerging Leaders Program (A2ELP) is a three month leadership program for 15 social entrepreneurs from ASEAN and Australia. The program includes: pre-program education, a ten-day intensive program in Melbourne and Sydney including workshops, networking events, field visits, cultural activities, and support for implementation.
The A2ELP 2018 aligns with the ASEAN-Australian Special Summit, a high-level event which aims to strengthen Australia’s strategic partnership with ASEAN. A2ELP 2017 alumni and 2018 delegates will partake in a range of activities associated with the Summit, including high level dialogues with leaders in government and business.
A2ELP is designed to:
- Enhance the leadership potential of participants;
- Strengthen and expand people-to-people, professional, and institutional networks between Australia and South-East Asia and;
- Showcase contemporary Australian and South-East Asian creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship.
A2ELP is an Australian Government initiative and is a flagship program for the Australia-ASEAN Council (AAC) with co-funding contributions from the Australia Awards and Alumni Branch (AWB) at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT). The 2018 program will also include co-funding from the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet (PM&C) for the 2017 alumni. The A2ELP is implemented by Asialink, at The University of Melbourne. The 2018 workshop delivery partners include Asialink Business and BlueChilli.
Over a three-month period, participants will:
- build knowledge of scalable and sustainable business models to achieve long term change
- develop skills to engage a range of stakeholders
- receive training in cultural intelligence and lean start-up methodology
- participate in networking events and field visits to innovative social ventures in Australia
- discuss the latest thinking and ideas in social impact with academic experts and industry leaders
- foster connections with participants through peer mentoring exercises and alumni engagement
Participants will travel to Australia from 10 to 19 March 2018 to participate in a ten-day intensive program in Melbourne and Sydney.
The program will be delivered in three phases:
1. Pre-departure preparation
Following a competitive application process from September – October, participants will be selected in November 2017. Virtual meetings will be convened with program participants. These video meetings are designed to introduce participants to each other, provide learning materials and brief participants on program content. Participants will also receive support for travel arrangements, visa applications, and other immigration requirements.
2. Intensive training in Australia
Participants will travel to Melbourne and Sydney for a ten-day program from 10 to 19 March 2018, where they will take part in a range of workshops, site visits, master classes, peer learning sessions and networking events. Participants will cultivate their leadership capabilities and refine their business proposal using the skills developed through these activities, presenting their final version to members of the Australia-ASEAN Council Board in Sydney.
3. Implementation and ongoing network
Participants are required to prepare an implementation plan to follow the intensive training. Asialink and DFAT will support participants to identify potential activities, events, mentoring, connections, and other opportunities that align with their post-program goals. Participants will be given the opportunity to participate in Asialink and DFAT-sponsored dialogues and networking events. Opportunities will also be explored to involve participants in regional projects relevant to their professional interest. Through this activity, A2ELP alumni will be connected with DFAT and Asialink’s regional networks.
Program participants will need to meet the following criteria:
- Citizens of Australia or an ASEAN country (Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Thailand, Laos, Myanmar, Vietnam, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines)
- founder or co-founder of a social enterprise
- aged between 25-35 years old
- can demonstrate said enterprises potential impact in social / economic / environmental causes while being scaleable and profitable
- be able to demonstrate relevance to a relationship with, or ability to scale in South-East Asia
- be able to commit to the three-month program including pre-departure preparation, ten-day intensive, and post program requirements
- be able to access digital technology to engage in all three stages of the program
- be able to provide one professional written reference
- professional working knowledge of the English language
In addition to these criteria, applicants will be assessed on their:
- demonstrated awareness of the challenges in their entrepreneurial area that can be explored during the program
- commitment to actively seeking to network opportunities with peers from the region to enhance their professional and personal development
Applications have now closed for 2018.
The AAC generates opportunities for Australian business, education, science and innovation and the arts to work with partners in South-East Asia. The Council's mission is to increase knowledge and promote Australia's interests in South-East Asia by initiating and supporting activities designed to enhance awareness, understanding and links between people and institutions in Australia and South-East Asia.
Asialink is Australia's leading centre for the promotion of public understanding of the countries of Asia and of Australia's role in the region. We are a key provider of information, training and professional networks. Our purpose is to build an Asia-capable, deeply Asia-engaged Australia through thought leadership and innovative programs that build knowledge, skills and partnerships.
As Australia’s National Centre for Asia Capability, Asialink Business provides tailored solutions to help businesses seize the potential of diverse Asian markets. Asialink Business will deliver a workshop on cultural intelligence as part of the program. This will provide the intellectual tools and communication strategies for participants to collaborate with peers from the region, build international networks and scale up their social ventures across Australia and South-East Asia in the future.
Australia Global Alumni
The Australia Global Alumni Engagement Strategy is a whole of government initiative developed in collaboration with Australia’s education sector. The Strategy recognises the lasting, powerful impact of Australia’s global alumni connections. It reaches out to the global alumni community – people from overseas who have had an Australian educational experience and Australians who have studied and worked abroad - inviting alumni to connect and engage with Australia and each other.
Established in 1853, the University of Melbourne is a public-spirited institution that makes distinctive contributions to society in research, learning and teaching and engagement. It’s consistently ranked among the leading universities in the world, with international rankings of world universities placing it as number 1 in Australia and number 33 in the world (Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2015-2016).
BlueChilli is a leading Australian accelerator. Their mission is to ‘connect corporates, investors and entrepreneurs to solve the world's biggest challenges’. BlueChilli will deliver workshops designed to address the foundational elements of managing a start-up including demonstrating a deep understanding of the customer problem and then a high level framework for the implementation of a solution to match. BlueChilli’s workshops and master classes are designed to provide participants with the tools they need to develop, execute and amplify their ventures and to succeed as social entrepreneurs.
The Australia-ASEAN Emerging Leaders Program (A2ELP) is made possible by our partners. Below are the 15 social entrepreneurs who were selected from across South-East Asia and Australia to take part in the inaugural 2018 program. In March 2018 participants traveled to Melbourne and Sydney for an eight-day program, where they will take part in a range of workshops, site visits, masterclasses, peer learning sessions and networking events to expand on their social enterprise or create a new social venture.
Sovan is the Co-Founder and CEO of Edemy, a 2-year old edtech social enterprise that provides blended online/offline English learning solution to rural Cambodian students via a network of social franchisees. The mission of Edemy is to equalize access to quality education for everyone everywhere. Before then, she led the Marketing Department at IDP Education (Cambodia), an international company specializing in international student placement, English language teaching and testing services. Sovan is also an active volunteer in her community, having authored a career planning guidebook for high school and college students, as well as initiated numerous workshops on soft-skills, and entrepreneurship, etc. Sovan’s lifelong passion is in helping young people develop themselves to their fullest potential through formal and informal education and independent learning.
Weh Yeoh was born in Sydney and has lived, volunteered and worked in Cambodia for over five years. He is a professionally trained physiotherapist who has also completed a Masters in development studies. He has a diverse background, having travelled through remote parts of Asia, volunteered with people with disabilities in Vietnam, interned in India, and studied Mandarin in Beijing. He founded OIC Cambodia after meeting Ling, a boy who slurs his speech. With basic speech therapy, Ling is now going to school for the first time and not just participating, but excelling. He’s coming second in his class. Weh would love to see this success for every child in Cambodia, and yet, there is not one local speech therapist in Cambodia. Weh believes that every person deserves a chance and loves fighting for the underdog.
Ying Qing is the Founder of TEAQ Projects, an independent research lab and multidisciplinary collective that develops creative documentation projects on personal narratives and microhistories. With Bios, the collective accompanies seniors and retirees to present their life stories in print, documentary film or private exhibitions. Through partnerships with the healthcare and social services sector, she hopes to contribute towards conversations on individual personhoods and person-centred care. She is also researching and developing work that explores the transmission of intangible cultural heritage in Southeast Asia. Ying Qing has a BA (Hons) in Linguistics and Multilingual Studies from Nanyang Technological University (2012) and has presented and participated in numerous platforms including Institut Français’ Culture Lab: Identités Plurielles (2013), National Arts Council’s Curating Lab (2014), the International Association of Libraries, Museums, Archives and Documentation Centres of the Performing Arts (2016), and Singapore International Foundation’s Artists for a Better World (2017).
James is an education entrepreneur and consultant passionate about transformative education models for the 21st century. His experience includes advising governments and NGOs with McKinsey and Acasus, and building and operating networks of schools and learning centres in Asia. He currently focuses on leading TULA, an innovative chain of after-school learning centres helping kids develop 21st century skills and essential character traits. He is a regular speaker at global education conferences including the ASEAN Deep Learning Policy Series, Global Education and Skills Forum, BRAC’s Frugal Innovation Forum, and SOLVE at MIT. His work has been published in journals such as the Handbook of International Development and Education and through organisations such as the Centre for Education Innovations.
Ashleigh Morris is a highly recognised expert in environmental management and the Co-Founder of The Circular Experiment, a revolutionary business that builds the economic, environmental and social capital of small businesses through the implementation of the circular economy. Throughout her career, Ashleigh has worked alongside world leaders in environmental management holding both national and international management roles working in the fields of palm oil and reverse logistics of recyclable products. Passionate about transforming business as usual Ashleigh is the Chair of Queensland’s Future Business Generation and a member of the Smart Cities Council Australia New Zealand Centre for Civic Innovation working group. Ashleigh holds a Bachelor of Environmental Health Science with Faculty Commendation for Academic Excellence, the Chancellors Medal and First Class Honours in Environmental Management. Ashleigh is a Prime Ministers Australia Asia Scholar, the 2015 Early Career Environmental Health Professional of the Year and most recently represented Australia in the world’s largest green business competition, Climate KIC.
Mikhara Ramsing is a 27 year old social entrepreneur from Brisbane, Queensland. She is the founder of two social enterprises: Ground Chai, which sells chai to cafes to fund the provision of skill workshops for high schools in rural communities, and; Ethnic LGBT+ which is Australia’s first free national platform providing education, support and mentoring for culturally and linguistically diverse LGBT+ individuals. Mikhara holds a double honours degree in a Bachelor of Laws and Economics and uses these skills to empower the youth mental health space. After working as an economist at Deloitte Access Economics, Mikhara spent 5 months travelling around Australia to understand the needs of youth in rural and regional communities. She is passionate about youth empowerment and creating sustainable models for social change.
Aukrit Unahalekhaka is the co-founder of Ricult, a social enterprise startup that leverages machine learning and satellite imagery to help farmers in Thailand and Pakistan increase farm productivity and access affordable loan, helping lift them out of poverty. Ricult has been named the best Social Enterprise in Southeast Asia and Oceania in the Global Social Venture Competition, won the Fintech Disrupt Challenge organized by Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and awarded Innovative Agribusiness by United Nations Industrial Developmental Organization. Aukrit was also named as Thailand Top Entrepreneur Under 35 by the Thai Government. Aukrit received a joint master’s degree in engineering and management from MIT where he was a fellow at the MIT Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship. Prior to MIT, he was a consultant at Accenture in the Boston office and a software engineer at Cisco in Silicon Valley.
Being an accounting graduate from UiTM Shah Alam, I spent my first 3 years at WorleyParsons doing finance in the oil & gas industry. I eventually decided to use my expertise with numbers to help startups at Qeerad - an Angel Investment Company that looks for promising startups to invest in. Besides that, Qeerad also did bootstrap marketing trainings to assist startups in their growth. Armed with 2 years of startup investment experience, I decided to join MaGIC’s accelerator program to validate my idea and I officially launched Grub Cycle after 2 months. Since then, Grub Cycle has raised a few rounds of grants and investment worth almost USD 250,000 while gaining the support of Mountain Partners, MaGIC, myHarapan, Cradle, SUPERB TERAJU, Alliance Bank and Manulife - along with winning two awards at the Alliance BizSmart Challenge 2016.
Min Htet is the founder of Viitor, Coding and Robotics School in Myanmar which inspires kids between 7 to 14 years old to learn how to code. In today's digital world, Min believes that every kid in every school should learn coding because coding and Technology improves lives and society. That is why Min is passionate to see the younger generations not only as Tech consumers, but also as Tech innovators in ASEAN and Asia Region. Min’s vision is to create a fun and engaging platform where children not only learn to program but also have opportunities to be innovative using code. Min had an MBA from USA and had worked at Fortune 500 companies. Min currently sits on the executive committee of MYEA (Myanmar Young Entrepreneurs Association), which has a mission to empower young entrepreneurs and assist in creating a vibrant entrepreneurship ecosystem in Myanmar.
Mr Doan Thanh Tung is an entrepreneur and a HIV, LGBT activist . He is the director of the Lighthouse Social Enterprise, one of the first and largest LGBTQ community-led organization in Viet Nam since 2004. Lighthouse aims to improve quality of life of LGBTQ people in Vietnam towards confidence, healthy and equal. Mr. Tung has 8 year experiences working with groups who are young, vulnerable and disadvantaged in the community in Viet Nam. He is a community expert and researcher in the fields of community, stigma and discrimination, sexuality, SRHR and HIVAIDS in Vietnam. His work ranges from running the business to generate income for the company, as well as designing and implementing various programs and innovations based on the LGBTQ community context and needs, conducting researches to evidence-based intervention and advocacy in terms of sexual and reproductive health and rights.
Heidi Lenffer is the founder of FEAT. - an environmental social enterprise for the music industry that enables artists to use touring to fund solar energy projects. FEAT. is a smart industry solution to the climate challenge where artists invest a percentage of tour income to accelerate the renewables sector and reduce the overall carbon emissions from touring. This also creates an alternative income stream for artists through the investment returns, helping to secure their future, both financially and environmentally. The impetus behind FEAT. is Heidi's 10 - year career as a touring artist and founding member of Cloud Control; an ARIA-award nominated Australian band with several critically acclaimed albums. With Cloud Control, Heidi has toured extensively around the world and won the Australian Music Prize in 2011. Heidi has a background in journalism and holds a Bachelor and Master in Media and Communications from Sydney University and Queensland University of Technology.
Nathanael's passion is to see a more equal, just, and exploitation-free world. He is the Founder of threeonesix, a consumer goods social enterprise specialising in loose-leaf tea that is ethically produced, organic-certified and high quality. Through a unique direct trade model, threeonesix champions safe and dignified work in regions around the world that are prevalent in exploitation and human trafficking. Nathanael's career in this field started in 2012, when he worked for Not For Sale, a world-leading international anti-human trafficking organisations based in San Francisco. He completed his MBA at The University of Western Australia and Copenhagen Business School, specialising in global supply chain management and social entrepreneurship. Thereafter, he worked in impact investing in Scandinavia. Nathanael is a proud Young Social Pioneer alum (Foundation for Young Australians), Global Shaper (World Economic Forum) and Social Enterprise Advisory Board Member of The Platform Perth.
Samantha is a visual artist and educator with a Bachelors in Fine Art, majoring in Photography. Together with fellow artist Budi Agung Kuswara, she co-founded Ketemu Project an art organization and social enterprise based in Bali-Indonesia. As Director, Samantha leads the Ketemu team in developing projects with the participation of community members to address social issues. The programs at Ketemu harnesses creativity for social empowerment and to generate community-led solutions. Since 2015, Ketemu has taken the lead together with community partners, to establish the first psycho-social rehabilitation centre for people living with mental diffabilities in Bali..
Maniphet is the founder of Vientiane Education Fair (VEF), which helps high school students make a more informed choice on their college majors and future careers. VEF aims to reduce dropout rates in tertiary institutions and address the issues of skill shortages in Laos. Prior to founding VEF, Maniphet co-authored the College Majors Guidebook and Web, the first comprehensive guidebook on college majors in Laos. Maniphet is currently developing Vientiane Academy, which is the expansion of VEF.
Charlotte Lim moved away from the charming island of Borneo for a couple of years to explore and further her career in the arts scene as a dancer. Having experienced and worked in the creative industries abroad, she wanted to bring bits & pieces she had gathered back to her home country of Brunei where arts appreciation and its community was only just beginning. With a passion for the creative arts industry and community building, The Creative Core BN was formed in 2016; a creative company, big on collaboration, that focuses on arts education through experiential events. Wanting to keep up with her first love, Dance, she spends her weekends teaching dance & aerial arts in a local studio. She is also the current Vice Curator of the Global Shapers Bandar Seri Begawan hub.
For further discussion about the program, please contact Wesa Chau, on email@example.com or call +61 0 8344 5610.
Below are the 15 social entrepreneurs who were selected from across South-East Asia and Australia to take part in the inaugural 2017 program. In March 2017 participants traveled to Melbourne and Sydney for an eight-day program, where they took part in a range of workshops, site visits, masterclasses, peer learning sessions and networking events to expand on their social enterprise or create a new social venture.
Natalie is Founder and CEO of My Green World, a wildlife and environmental organisation developing youth-focussed solutions to global ecology crises. She also created World of the Wild, the first mobile game app which allows young people to participate in virtual wildlife conservation scenarios. Natalie has a Bachelor degree in Journalism and a Master of International Relations from the University of Melbourne, as well as a scholarship degree in Gender and Security from the University of Delhi. Since 2010, Natalie has been creating pioneering youth programs that aim to increase engagement in nature conservation efforts worldwide.
Cherrie is a founding farmer in AGREA Philippines, an agri-social enterprise on Marinduque island. AGREA aims to develop a replicable “one island” economy model founded on sustainable agriculture and quality education for the children of local farmers and fishermen. In 2016 Cherrie received one of The Outstanding Women in the Nation's Service awards, in recognition of her work in the Filipino agriculture sector over the last 18 years.
Josh is a Worimi man from the Mid North Coast of NSW, who uses Indigenous wisdom and values, alongside his environmental and agricultural knowledge, to shape modern society. He works as a Senior Consultant with PwC’s Indigenous Consulting, and has received several awards, including Australian Geographic Young Conservationist of the Year and the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage’s Green Globe Young Sustainability Champion. In 2015, Josh was named in Pro Bono Australia’s Impact 25 as one of the top 25 most influential people in Australia for his work in climate change and agriculture.
Ex-Radio DJ with a program that inspires young people to start their own enterprises, Emily is known in Singapore as the “Chief of Awesome”. She delivers a program called Beyond Awesome to at-risk students, providing education and once-in-a-lifetime opportunities through work experience and training. Emily’s achievements have been recognised by Yahoo! Singapore 9 Awards, Cosmopolitan Singapore’s ‘Fun Fearless Female’, Singapore International Foundation’s Young Social Entrepreneur Program, and the GOOD 100 Global Changemaker.
Gigih co-founded and runs a medical crowdfunding platform, WeCare.id, that helps fund medical treatment for patients in Indonesia’s underserviced communities. With a computer engineering background and passion for building things, Gigih has also established a tech agency which consults to the government and local start-ups in Indonesia. Gigih has received numerous awards, including the Asia Social Innovation Award, the Bayer Aspirin Social Innovation Award, and has also been a Mandiri Young Technopreneur.
Aimi is Co-Founder and Chief Business Development Officer of Tyne Solutions, a consultancy firm building custom software that lets businesses focus on what they do best. Previously an Associate Director at Institutional Investor Forums and Memberships in London and Hong Kong, she co-directed the Asia TraderForum and helped to establish the Asia Institute. Aimi has also been an Education Officer with the Ministry of Education in Brunei and a writer for NewsBites.com.au in Melbourne.
Michael is CEO and Co-Founder of Global Patient Portal, a digital health company based in Melbourne. For the past 3 years his focus has been on India, where he has rolled out an award winning electronic health record product. Michael advises on digital health policy across India and has recently been named as one of the 100 Most Impactful Healthcare Leaders in the country. He is currently expanding his focus across Asia. Prior to his current role Michael worked as a Commercial Lawyer in Melbourne, he also holds as Master of Laws degree.
Emme is Founder and Chairman of Teky Academy, the first STEAM Academy for children between 6 and 18 years old. The ambition of Teky Academic is to empower the next generation with computer science skills and knowledge for the digital economy, nurturing Vietnam’s future “technopreneurs”. Emme also co-founded Nexttech Group, a pioneer in cross border e-commerce, fin-tech and e-logistics solutions, with a commercial presence in the US, Vietnam, Malaysia, Philippines, Indonesia, and Thailand.
Souliyo is a co-founder and CTO of Bizgital Company, a startup that aims to bring technology and media to underdeveloped areas in Laos. Partnering with the only co-working space in Laos, Toh Lao, Souliyo is working to expand the start-up and entrepreneurial culture in his country. He is currently researching and building a platform to host service providers and businesses in one place to maximise the efficiency and convenience for local users in Laos.
Hsu is an administrator of Youth Doctors Healthcare Group, which organises young doctors and medical students to give free and reliable medical services in Myanmar’s remote areas. She is a volunteer doctor for other NGOs and INGOs to support medical check-up programs and is also a freelance trainer for community health workers. She was the 2011 Miss SMART (Outstanding Youth) in the Youth Development Program of the United Nations Population Fund and is currently working as medical officer for an epilepsy project at the World Health Organization.
After working in commercial banking for 6 years, Koy co-founded CAMSOLAR, a social enterprise which provides solar systems to rural communities. With an academic background in Finance and a Master’s degree in Risk Management, Koy has also created GROW, a microcredit operator which provides finance for people to purchase solar technology through affordable instalments. Under his direction, CAMSOLAR has already installed solar systems in more than 300 rural households across Cambodia.
Wen Shin is the Founder of Green Yards, a social enterprise which reduces water pollution in Malaysia. Green Yards provides a channel for local communities to dispose of used cooking oil by reprocessing grease into eco-friendly soap and candles. Since being established in 2016, Green Yards has already prevented 1.8 tons of used cooking oil from polluting waterways. Wen Shin is now organising soap making workshops across Malaysia to raise community awareness and participation in recycling projects.
Thanapon is a social entrepreneur with professional experience in Thailand’s corporate and social impact sectors. After years of working in advertising, he decided to leave the business world and jumped into his country’s social sector. Joining the ChangeFusion Institute, Thanapon managed an incubation program for emerging social entrepreneurs before founding Nokhook Group in 2014, a social enterprise that aims to lift small-scale farmers out of poverty.
Celia is the Co-Founder and Managing Director of SHE Investments, a social enterprise in Cambodia. SHE supports women micro entrepreneurs to scale their businesses through culturally tailored incubator and accelerator programs. Celia’s background in international development across multiple countries, combined with her passion for women’s economic empowerment, also led her to recently launch a socially responsible café in Phnom Penh.
Annisa is the Founder of Ecofunopoly® environmental interactive Board Games. Her social enterprise, Ecofun Indonesia, aims to develop more understanding of environmental issues and science through interactive games. Annisa is also a founder and leader of the Ecofun Community, a voluntary community in Indonesia which has been active since 2009. Aside from developing Ecofunopoloy, Annisa recently authored 'Student Traveller', a book about her travel experiences.
For further discussion about the program, please contact Wesa Chau, Program Coordinator on firstname.lastname@example.org or call + 61 3 8344 4800.