SUBMISSION FOR ASIA SOCIAL INNOVATION AWARD
1. What social problem are you trying to solve?
The challenge we’re tackling is the rapid aging of population in SouthEast Asia, and specifically in Thailand. At the moment Thailand has ~14 million senior citizens. Within this group 80% are “Active Seniors”- people fully capable of participating in society, but who are socially isolated, and as result feel lonely, bored, and prone to depression. These mental issues often result in poor health and general deterioration, that could be prevented through a more active and social life.
2. Describe the innovativeness of your solution to the outlined
The Younghappy community, content, and events help seniors maintain an active lifestyle that promotes their self esteem, keeps them engaged with their peers, and as a result, supports their wellbeing. We leverage a mix of 3rd party and proprietary technology to maximize our reach and engagement with our target audience. All our activities and development are done in close collaboration with seniors from our community.
Through a mix of offline events, online content, and community building both offline and online, we’re creating a unique community that supports seniors, empowers them, and gives them a renewed lease of life. The resulting morale boosts yield significant health benefits, and help prevent age induced ailments.
In two years of activity we’ve built a community of ~40,000 seniors, that keeps expanding daily.
3. How sustainable is your financial model?
Our financial model is based on building up our community and serving as a trusted gatekeeper and intermediary between businesses and interests targeting our demographic. We’re already generating revenue from commercial partners who look to us to arrange events promoting their products and services to our community.
The trend for the region is that senior populations are increasing their relative size in the general population, and as a direct result the importance of impact and opportunity that communities like YoungHappy have must grow proportionally.
4. How scalable and investment-ready is your startup?
We’re only scratching the surface of the opportunities presented by having a trusting relationship with our demographic. Our planned expansion is horizontal in 2 dimensions:
1. The breadth of offers we will be presenting to our community – curating content and advertising, ecommerce offers, digital services, etc.
2. Our geographic reach – currently we’ve already seen interest in offering YoungHappy via local partners in Malaysia and Japan.
5. Describe your team's knowledge and understanding of the target
We’ve spent the past 2 years learning and working with our audience, and have gone so far as to focus our recruitment efforts for our own team on seniors.
Our CMO, k. Nada is a committee member for Banpanruk, an NGO community for seniors, and has been a volunteer with seniors for years.
Our efforts to date have been validated as follows:
1. We were awarded the UNDP social new gen in Thailand
2. We represent Thailand in Asia pacific YOUTH CO-LAB by UNDP.
3. We received the popular vote for ImpactTech’s 1st cohort in Thailand.
4. We’ve been contracted to be partner of the Thai government’s Thai Health Promotion Foundation to support Digital Literacy for elderly throughout the country
5. We received a grant from the Thai government’s National Innovation Agency