Start Now: Social Platform for Singapore and Asia Matches Volunteers to Non-Profits

With the conclusion of Startup at Singapore, the biggest winner of the Startup at Singapore finals was a social volunteering platform called START NOW.  This social volunteering platform which connects volunteers from schools, corporate organizations, and the public to non-profits that need help.

Start Now Engages the Community through Volunteering

Start Now is the first non-governmental volunteerism advocacy social enterprise in Singapore.  It actively engages schools, companies, and non-profit organizations to grow volunteerism and social responsibility in Singapore.  It is a way of connecting volunteers with volunteering opportunities by providing an integrated platform and management tool for nonprofits, businesses and schools to coordinate, track and manage volunteering opportunities.Founded by Ivan Chang and Keith Tan, the primary focus of the platform is to grow volunteerism in Singapore and in Asia.

Corporate Social Responsibility & Volunteering

The platform is provided free of charge to nonprofit organizations because they are the backbone of providing volunteer opportunities.  In addition to the nonprofit component, there is also an enterprise solution for businesses seeking to leverage the power of corporate volunteering to build brand and create deeper employee engagement.  Start Now allows businesses to connect their employees with volunteering opportunities and to track and assess the impact of volunteering activities across their individual organization.

Start Now has strategic alignment with the Singapore National Youth Council and the Ministry of Community Development, Youth and Sports. The program is incubated by NUS Enterprise and the Grameen Creative Lab @ NUS and supported by the YES! Startups Grant by Spring Singapore, mentored by the Singapore International Foundation’s Young Social Entrepreneurs Programme.  Start Now has also been nominated by IS Magazine as one of 2012’s Most Promising Startups and is powering the 2012 SHINE Youth Festival pledging portal. With each competition and application for mentorship, Start Now has continued to refine their business model and gain experience.

Start Now is currently seeking passionate developers who are looking to make a difference by creating a sustainable, scalable business in an extremely uncrowded market space – one that is growing rapidly across Asia.  Start Now has the goal of becoming Asia’s leading platform for social good.  As part of the rapid growth, there is an immediate need for new developers.

How Can Volunteering Solve the Major Issues Plaguing Global Cities?

Most often than not, even people within a community are alien to the problems faced by other members. These issues could be widespread societal or environmental issues. Through volunteering, companies and citizens can become knowledgeable and active participants. Simple awareness creates a cycle of positive change: the non-profit gets the man-hours they need, involved citizens take actions and churn policy changes and a closer community network is created. Corporations that encourage employees to volunteer create a unifying agenda, have better employee satisfaction and build trust in their communities.

As to the future, Start Now is currently re-evaluating their current position and anticipating a major revamp immediately.  The expansion includes a focus on the general concept of “social good” while also maintaining the existing volunteer platform as one of its prongs.  The vision and mission is for people to “Start Now” by getting involved in solving the challenges facing our global society.  Start Now is all about starting now with volunteering and then expanding the ways global citizens can and must help.


Pattie Kettle from The Content Writing People is a high quality/professional/high volume writer for all things web! She enjoys PR and Marketing work –  and is a cleanweb advocate for the masses. She lives in Denver, CO. You can find her on Twitter @PattieContent

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