Youth for Social Entrepreneurship (Y4SE) is a program that focuses on upskilling in social entrepreneurship and promoting establishment and growth of start-ups. The program spans from offering life skills, technical skills and social enterprise development skills to youth in last miles and consequently linking them to available incubators, accelerators, and investment opportunities.

Projects under the Program


Due to social constraints and stereotyping, women are particularly excluded from ICT related careers. Additionally, the few women who pursue such careers remain unemployed or underpaid compared to their male counterparts. The Digilabs Project seeks to address  the socio-economic barriers to entry into the labor  market for young women in rural Kenya. We do this  by leveraging the power of  information and communication technology (ICT) and associated benefits. Digilabs are Integrated Resource Centers that advance digital literacy and promote ideas for start-ups and scale ups.

We have successfully empowered over 300 young entrepreneurs developing social businesses in the  selected counties we have operated. Our model is conducting activation workshops, business development training, mentorship and linkage to financing or incubating partners. We leverage on building young community champions resulting in young leaders driving social change at  the grassroots. To overcome the roadblock of a lacking startup funds, we have a kitty and this program called DigiFund that gives capital as a seed fund to most promising alumni of DigiLab


European Union- Mladiinfo International, MIT-Dlab, Global Philanthropy Alliance, Bunifu  Technologies, Cypher Africa, Chandaria Business Innovation and Incubation Center, Startup Wave, County Governments. 


The  Grassroots  Entrepreneurs  Summit  brings together  national  and  regional  social  enterprise  stakeholders—private sector and public sector actors, technologists, entrepreneurs, scientists, members  of academia, seed investors, and other innovators—to collaboratively generate solutions in critical areas of  entrepreneurship  ecosystems,  education, and  policy  creation,  with  the  overall  aim  of  fostering  the  participation  of  youth  and  women  in  social  entrepreneurship,  particularly  those  from  underserved  communities.

Social entrepreneurship can help clearly define the economic, social, and environmental challenges grassroot communities face, craft self-sustaining solutions and mobilize resources to implement them. Data  indicates a huge  gap  between  the  urban  and  last mile  social enterprise ecosystems. 82% network accelerators are based in Nairobi, and the remaining structures have an  international focus.  60% of social enterprises are based in Nairobi. Grassroot communities experience unique challenges linked to geographical remoteness, low penetration of supporting infrastructure, a lack of supportive initiatives, and limited and difficult markets.

EmpServe Kenya  has helped to  federate  ecosystem players through the annual summit helping unlock the huge potential of grassroots social entrepreneurs. GES2018 was hosted at Kenyatta University on September 19, 2018 in partnership with MIT DLab and Chandaria Business Innovation and Incubation Centre (CBIIC). The goal of EmpServe’s first GES was to bring together social entrepreneurs and key stakeholders to discuss the challenges and opportunities of social entrepreneurship and to chart a path for future summits. The summit, which included a town hall discussion, brought together actors from all sectors and covered a range of key issues.

GES2019 was hosted by EmpServe Kenya on September 19, 2019 in partnership with the Chandaria Business & Incubation Centre of Kenyatta University and W4 (Women’s WorldWide Web), a global leader in women’s empowerment.

The objective of GES2019 was to build on the lessons learned at the inaugural GES2018 and to focus explicitly on women’s socialentrepreneurship. The theme of GES2019 was:

“Demystifying the place of women social entrepreneurs in driving social change.”


Chandaria Business Innovation and Incubation Center, Kenyatta Univerity, W4  (Women’s  WorldWide  Web) and MIT-DLab.