Please note that the applications to the Chat for Impact Accelerator '22 are now closed.
2021 Accelerator Alumni
“Based on the success of the Chat for Impact programme launched in 2021, we’re excited to expand this year to support a further 100 organisation with 8 Bootcamps of which twenty will each receive $25,000 in financial support to scale their service for social change.

We’re looking forward to seeing this year’s cohort develop and scale their breakthrough solutions to change lives. "
Gustav Praekelt,
CO-founder, TURN.IO

What to expect from the program

ACCELERATOR
The 6-week virtual program launches in October and provides mentorship and support to social impact organizations that want to build and scale a WhatsApp chat service.
20 organisations will receive US$ 25,000 in prizes to launch a live chat service on the WhatsApp Business Platform.
Mentorship from WhatsApp and social innovation experts.
Learning from world-class organizations about how they successfully built their chat services.
SUMMIT
This 3-day virtual event showcases and celebrates organizations globally using WhatsApp to achieve impact.
Inspirational Keynote
Panel discussions by key industry experts
Strategic and hands-on sessions
Free access to Summit content
Invitation to participate in a Chat for Impact community of practice

Application Criteria

To be eligible for the Accelerator Program, your organization must:
  • Complete the application by submitting their social impact a use case
  • Have attended a Chat for Impact Bootcamp session in 2021/22 to start the WhatsApp business API process
Register For Bootcamp
"We’re thrilled to continue Chat for Impact, in partnership with Praekelt and Turn.io, to support and advance the work of social impact organizations across the globe. The Accelerator is an exciting opportunity to dig in with a select number of organizations to scale the reach and impact of their WhatsApp service. We look forward to seeing what these organizations create and the impact they are able to achieve."
Ben Supple,
Head of Civic Engagement WhatsApp at Meta

The Selection Process

1
All Applicants
Will be invited to attend a Chat for Impact Bootcamp; Onboarded to the WhatsApp Business Platform; Receive resources and a collection of social impact case studies.
2
Will be selected by a judging panel to join the Accelerator Program.

Will receive ongoing mentorship and financial support (US$ 25,000 each) to build and scale their WhatsApp service to enhance their work in a specific social impact vertical.
20 Applicants to the Accelerator
Apply Now

Program Mentors

Simon de Haan
Co-Founder
CTO at Turn.io
Technical and
Product Specialist.
Lieze Langford
Global Partnerships
Lead at Turn.io
Go To Market Advisor.
Pippa Yeats
Co-Founder
Head of Product at Turn.io
Behavioural Change
and Service Design Advisor.
Key Dates
Application deadline for Accelerator Program
Sep 21
Summit
Nov 14 - 16
"SameSame was a cherished but dusty idea in an old deck until the WhatsApp Chat for Impact Accelerator came along. Thanks to the support from the team at Turn.io our ragtag, but determined team managed to turn an idea into a working prototype in a matter of weeks and, a few months later, a functional organization."
Jonathan McKay,
Co-Founder SameSame
Registration
About your Organization
Who will attend the Accelerator? Please provide the names and roles.
Help us understand the work that you do.
WhatApp Business Platform readiness
Help us understand the work that you do.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!

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Chat for Impact Accelerator
Cohort 2021

FAQs
Who should apply?

If you are an organization that is actively driving social progress and is ready to scale your service using WhatsApp, then this is for you.


By agreeing to be considered as a Successful Accelerator Registrant, you represent and confirm that you will by the 20th of September 2022 have: -

a LIVE WhatsApp Business Application (WABA);
sent a minimum of one thousand messages in the first three months after completing onboarding to the WhatsApp Business API;
submitted a proposed use case (“the Proposed Use Case”),
attended at least one Chat for Impact Bootcamp session in either the 2021 or 2022 calendar year (if in the 2021 year, the candidate must not have already participated in the Accelerator Program;

The follow organizations will NOT be considered:

Governments.

Any government agency, e.g. political parties, the military, national security and/or law enforcement.
Any non-profit organization that represents a government.
Any private service providers to governments, e.g. campaign strategy, voting, government aggregators.
No promotion, political campaigning, voter data gathering or any sort of election influencing will be allowed by any type of organization.

Refer to WhatsApp Commerce Policy.

What if I need more support?

On the Pro plan you can escalate a support ticket via email.

Do we need to be using WhatsAPP or have a messaging service / bot already?

Yes. It is a pre-requirement that you have a Live WABA on WhatsApp Business Platform (API)

Does our program need to be at a specific scale?

We will give preference to those organizations that have a live WABA and have sent a minimum of 1000 messages in the first 3 months after completing onboarding to the WhatsApp Business API. We will give preference to organizations with potential to scale via WhatsApp.

Do we need to have it all figured out yet?

Certainly not, but we need to be confident that you have a committed and agile team with a suitable starting point and the tenacity and ability to iterate and learn. You will receive input during the 6 week accelerator to help you grow and achieve your goals. Right now we are interested in why you are the right team to support and invest in.

Do we need to be operating in specific countries?

No, but we will give preference to organizations that can have the biggest impact and operate in countries where WhatsApp is socially well adopted and actively used.

Do we need to have multilingual or single language programs?

It does not matter in how many languages you operate, but it matters that your program has a clear roadmap on who it is serving and why you are doing it in specific languages.It does not matter in how many languages you operate, but it matters that your program has a clear roadmap on who it is serving and why you are doing it in specific languages.It does not matter in how many languages you operate, but it matters that your program has a clear roadmap on who it is serving and why you are doing it in specific languages.It does not matter in how many languages you operate, but it matters that your program has a clear roadmap on who it is serving and why you are doing it in specific languages.It does not matter in how many languages you operate, but it matters that your program has a clear roadmap on who it is serving and why you are doing it in specific languages.It does not matter in how many languages you operate, but it matters that your program has a clear roadmap on who it is serving and why you are doing it in specific languages.

Do we need to be tech savvy to be considered?

No, we believe that both small or big, tech savvy or new-to-digital organizations are able to successfully use WhatsApp.

What are we committing to?

There are two stages to the Chat for Impact Accelerator

Stage 1: The 6 week Accelerator Program

Attend 4 weekly sessions (60-90 mins per session).
These will be group sessions, hosted online on dates made available in advance.
Attend bi-weekly check-ins (30 mins per session) to update on progress and discuss any issues and/or ideas.
Demo final service at the Summit and Complete a case study to share learnings.


Stage 2: The three-day virtual Summit

If you are one of the 20 organizations that gets selected for the Accelerator program,  for the virtual summit you are committing to the following:

Two dedicated team members to attend all sessions.

Each day will have between 2-4 hours of online sessions.
Complete all pre-work assignments before the Summit. It should take 1-2 hours to complete.
Complete all homework assignments during the Summit. The end goal of the summit is to demo your WhatsApp use-case to the audience. Preparing for this will require time outside of the summit hours. Plan to spend at least 1-2 hours additional per day to plan and build your demo.

Who in our team should attend?

The ideal combination is a business lead (i.e. a team member with a strategic focus and decision making ability) as well as technical lead (i.e. an operational, hands-on team member that will be responsible for implementation of your service).

Can more than two team members attend?

Selected organizations will receive the Accelerator agenda beforehand and will be allowed to invite additional team members to specific sessions as needed. However, no more than four members per organization will be able to attend a single session.

What are the attendance requirements?

Apart from the time commitment as explained above you will require a computer with internet access and sufficient data to attend all virtual sessions on a conference tool such as Zoom. Ideally your connection and data will allow you to attend the sessions with your video on.

Is it compulsory to sign-up for a WhatsApp Business API account after the Accelerator?

It is a selection criteria to have a live WABA account. So please note that if you do not have an existing WABA, your application will not be selected. If a WhatsApp service is not a strategic objective for your organization for 2022 then it is not the right time for you to apply for the Accelerator.

Can we apply if we are using or planning to use the WhatsApp Business App (not the API)?

Yes, but the Chat for Impact Accelerator will be focused on building services for the WhatsApp Business Platform (API) only. If you do not plan on scaling your service to use the API, this is not the right time for you to apply.

Do we need to use Turn.io as a BSP?

Turn.io is hosting the summit alongside WhatsApp however you are not obligated to use them as your Business Solution Provider (BSP). All summit participants will be able to work post the summit with any one of WhatsApp’s authorized Business Solution Providers. However, do note that even though the focus of the summit is on using chat to have an impact, all hands-on sessions will be on the Turn.io platform.

What is the WhatsApp Business API and why select it as the means for communication?

The WhatsApp Business API powers communication with users all over the world, so you can connect with them on WhatsApp in a simple, secure, and reliable way.

The WhatsApp Business API is a paid product. As part of the Accelerator, you may be granted a subsidized license for up to 3 months, thereafter further use of the API may result in monthly fees and/or messaging fees.

What type of messaging is allowed on the WhatsApp Business API?

WhatsApp is designed for simple, secure and reliable messaging. This includes one-on-one communication and chat bots with a clear escalation path to a human. Please refer to the WhatsApp Commerce Policy and WhatsApp Business Policy to familiarize yourself with the type of messages that are and are not allowed on the WhatsApp Business API.
The WhatsApp Business API is a paid product. As part of the Accelerator, you may be granted a subsidized license for up to 3 months, thereafter further use of the API may result in monthly fees and/or messaging fees.

What is a Business Service Provider (BSP)?

Business Service Providers (BSPs) are third-party solution providers with expertise on the WhatsApp Business API. These BSPs can help you communicate with your customers on WhatsApp for the approved use-cases of customer support and time-sensitive, personalized notifications. You can have a look at the list of authorized BSPs.

Will another Chat for Impact Summit be hosted?

We may or may not do this in the future again.

We were part of last year’s Accelerator cohort , can we apply?

No. If you were part of last year's Accelerator cohort, your application will not be considered.

We are already a Turn.io client, can we apply?

Yes, you may apply but remember government entities, agencies and/or institutions will not be considered.

What are the key factors that will be considered for selection?

We are looking for impact organizations with a strong mission and an engaging use-case suitable to the WhatsApp Business Platform. We are looking for dedicated teams with in-depth knowledge of their users and who are currently ready and strategically focused to build and drive a successful WhatsApp service.

All social impact organizations are welcome to apply. We aim to invite a diverse group of participants ranging in focus, geographies, scale and digital maturity.

Why was our application not successful?

There is unfortunately no straightforward answer to this question. If you didn’t answer all the questions or violated any of the application guidelines then the answer is easy. But if you gave it your best effort it is much more tricky to answer why. We can only say that it is less about your application lacking something specific and more about others being particularly good.

We were unsuccessful, can we still get started on WhatsApp?

There is nothing stopping you from applying for a WhatsApp Business Account (WABA) through any Business Service Provider (BSP) or to start using the WhatApp Business App. If we ever host another Chat for Impact Accelerator and Summit,  you are also more than welcome to apply again.

Do you give feedback on application results?

You will receive email communication from us on whether you were successful or not. We will not be providing any detailed feedback as to why you were successful or unsuccessful in your application.

When do applications close?

All applications received by midnight (00:00) PST on September 21st 2022 will be considered