Collaborative action, collective impact

Colabs is a community of action designed for business leaders looking to make a critical social difference. This initiative by Community Foundation of Singapore and National Volunteer and Philanthropy Centre offers a platform for givers with a common social focus to collectively build insights and co-create solutions.

Colabs aims to spur meaningful collaborations by enabling its members to assess gaps, identify opportunities and build scalable strategies by facilitating access to resources, experts and knowledgeable peers.

Three Colabs networks – focused on children and youth, persons with disability and the elderly – will take place. Each of these Colabs will meet at regular intervals to take a 360-degree view on the issue, build shared vision to guide change and create strategies for collective impact.

Colabs invites leaders from corporations, small and medium businesses, grantmakers, foundations and trusts as well as Individual donors, who seek to drive greater social impact through collective action, to express interest.

Children and youth
Children are the hope of our future, and guiding them towards fulfilling lives is important to every community. Cities can be wildly unequal places, and a healthy community must focus on keeping alive the prospects of equal opportunity. Our first Colabs focusing on children and youth starts by asking how we might hold onto the promise of education as a game changer for social mobility. The emphasis is on understanding the lag in educational attainment among children and youth from vulnerable families – identifying potential solutions and co-creating action plans to scale effective solutions. This Colabs invites givers focusing on impact for children and youth, to engage with us to map the landscape, learn from each other, set priorities, build common outcomes frameworks, and pilot innovative solutions.

Singapore is one of the fastest ageing societies in the world: nearly half a million people are 65 and older today, making up 15% of the population. This transition from aging to aged happened over a mere 19 years compared to Japan which took 26 years. By 2030, the aged population is set to double and every two working adults will be supporting an elderly person. This poses diverse challenges. What will retirement and re-employment be like? Will our healthcare system need to evolve? Do we have enough capacity in nursing homes and daycare centres? How do we help seniors keep active and healthy lives? Whether it is to advocate for better policies or scale innovative solutions, this Colabs provides the platform for nuanced discussions and collaborations on coping with our aging population.

A disability can pose challenges to meeting a person’s basic needs – whether it be with physical mobility and self-care, domestic life and relationships, acquiring education and employment or being involved in community and civic life. This in turn poses socio-economic and psychological challenges both to the individuals and their caregivers. The diverse nature of disabilities and interventions mean that change makers seeking to create sustainable impact will need to think beyond just friendlier spaces, greater awareness, and more care facilities. The intricacies of what solutions may lead to direct and systemic impact, need to be navigated together with key stakeholders, experts and peers. This Colabs aims to help frame the discussion on enabling an inclusive society through collective action.

If you wish to express your interest to be part of Colabs, visit here. To learn more, please write to us at