Ashoka’s Youth Venture seeks to create impact by transforming:

  1. The youth participant, through the enabling experience of starting a social venture.
  2. The youth team, as they learn important life skills and realize that they can create change.
  3. The community, as growing numbers of Youth Venture teams “tip” the local culture toward greater youth leadership.
  4. Society at large, by fundamentally redefining the role of young people as leaders of social change.

Impact Snapshot: Youth Venture has launched 10,000 youth-led ventures.  Each venture is managed by 3 to 5 young leaders and engages a team of 20 or more young changemakers who volunteer or work in the venture to realize the venture’s impact.  Each venture typically benefits over 100 people in the venture team’s community.

  • 92% of Venturers report a high degree of knowledge and capability in the area of leadership, 93% in the area of planning, and 79% in the area of budgeting;
  • 77% of Venturers are more involved in leadership roles in their community;
  • 70% are more interested in entrepreneurship;
  • 94% of Venturers indicated that their participation in Youth Venture increased their confidence in starting and/or leading a project;
  • 91% of Venturers report satisfaction with the accomplishments of their projects;
  • 72% of youth reported that their Ventures have benefitted over 100 people in their community including 27% of youth who reported that their Ventures have helped over 1,000 people;
  • 89% indicate their participation has affected their motivation and preparedness to pursue higher education; and
  • 81% feel better prepared for their future.

Read in-depth interviews with ten global venture teams to understand the transformative impact of Youth Venture in our ebook Stories of Change.


Youth Venturers

Our venture has raised SAT scores and student self esteem. Our students have gone on to great colleges and to earn scholarship funds. The community is more educated and will have more accomplished citizens returning to lead it in the future. -Jason

I learned to believe in myself and see my goals through...I want to design more clothing - I'm working in the fashion industry now. That's another result of the project. It's given me more ability and belief in myself. I designed hats that are easier to take off and don't mess up people's hair. So, we started selling them. -Deana


I am forever grateful for the opportunity Ashoka’s Youth Venture has given Jonny. I witnessed a transformation in my son that has let him take risks and grow into a young man with a mission... -Jakee Cohen, Parent of Youth Venturers Jonny

...when you’ve got a national organization that says to your child, I believe in you and here’s the money to back it up, that kid can do’s the confidence that comes from having somebody believe in them enough to back it up... -Susan Robinson, Parent of Youth Venturer Becca

School Partners

Every Shirley Middle School student understands that if they want to solve a problem, change something, make something better or help others they have an avenue through United Way Youth Venture to achieve that goal. United Way Youth Venture is part of our school culture. There are daily UWYV announcements, there are bulletin boards promoting UWYV, there are pages in the year book of the UWYV teams. We continue to move forward in ways I never imagined when first beginning to work with UWYV. Our students make a difference in the lives of those around them. They are changemakers. -Kathryn Lyon, Shirley School District UWYV Champion