Facebook India announces call for applications from women-led non-profits for second cohort of Pragati

Facebook Pragati, now in its second year, will incubate and accelerate, early stage women-led nonprofits that are working around women related issues.

FacebookIndia on Monday announced a call for applications from women-led non-profits, for its CSR initiative Facebook Pragati - powered by The/Nudge Centre for Social Innovation.

This will be its second cohort, aimed at incubating and accelerating early-stage, non-profit organisations focussed on women-related issues such as as entrepreneurship, digital inclusion, technology, and health.

This year, Facebook Pragati will award six grants of up to Rs. 50 lakhs for each non-profit to scale their work. 

Last year, four exceptional women-led non-profits were chosen out of a pool of 1,326 applications, and supported through grants and mentoring for 6-12 months.

Though COVID-19 led to massive downturn in the non-profit sector, with a significant percentage of organisations seeing shrinkage in annual revenues, women from the first cohort of Pragati stood out with their successes, more than tripling their annual revenues in FY2021, and planning for another doubling on the larger base in FY2022. 

In a press statement, Ajit Mohan, Vice President and Managing Director, Facebook India said, “Facebook has always been committed to promoting inclusivity through our platforms. We strongly believe that with the right digital training and resources, small businesses led by women can create a positive economic footprint for themselves as well as their communities. The impact of Covid on women entrepreneurs in India has exacerbated the vast gender gap. We launched Facebook Pragati last year to help women entrepreneurs in their journey to growth and have been inspired with the success of the first four beneficiary businesses. We are now thrilled to announce the second phase of it and await more such exciting organisations to be a part of this initiative with Nudge Foundation and us.”

“COVID-19 has resulted in a disproportionate negative impact on women in India and across the world, undoing years of work on narrowing the gender gap. In that backdrop, The/Nudge CSI is delighted to continue to partner with Facebook for the second year running to bring the right building blocks to women led non-profits focussed on serving women, one of the most disadvantaged but often ignored sections of the country.” added Akshay Soni, Managing Director, The Nudge Accelerator.

In addition to the grants, each of the non-profits selected for Facebook Pragati will have access to:

  • Mentorship: One-on-one strategic mentoring from industry leaders who have built scale in for profit or non-profit organisations to help each founder break through the barriers to scale for their non-profit.
  • Fund-raising: Along with improving the fundraising strategy of the non-profits through techniques including targeting and storytelling, the programme will also ensure face to face meetings with funders to enable the non-profits to utilise and internalise the learnings. 
  • Organisational capacity building: The programme will work on building second tier capacity within the non-profits, with a series of functional mentors across marketing, HR and technology. Apart from creating sustainability, this will also let the founder of the organisation spend time on strategic growth, resulting in scaling up faster.
Edited by Anju Narayanan