Our focus on women comes from the unique commitment WSEs have showcased in creating inclusive communities, replicating their work internationally, scaling through training as opposed to partnerships, struggling to enact policy change, and tackling female-specific barriers. Some examples of the work that WSEs are doing includes providing essentials to those affected by COVID-19, increasing mental health awareness, and educating children in underprivileged areas. Women’s efforts are frequently overlooked despite them driving a sizeable amount of growth in this fast-growing region, so we wanted to uplift and highlight their inspiring work.  

In collaboration with S&P Global Foundation, Ashoka has begun a journey of understanding how women are creating these inclusive economies. Women continuously innovate in order to generate social and economic value for their communities, and our report highlights some key things (such as funding and strategic thinking) that will enable them to scale their impact and serve as catalysts for system change. Our report on Advancing Women Social Entrepreneurs in ASEAN includes some inspirational stories from WSEs across the ASEAN region, letting their Changemaker spirit, strong female leadership, and commitment to building inclusive communities shine through. We are now collaborating with both Deutsche Bank and S&P Global Foundation to further explore the realm of WSEs in ASEAN. 


DIWA is a three-month long online capacity building program made possible by our partnership with Deutsche Bank and S&P Global Foundation. DIWA takes Women Social Entrepreneurs (WSEs) on a learning journey that empowers them to create stronger impact, all while establishing a community of determined WSEs in ASEAN. If you are a WSE who wants to build their capacity, deepen their impact, and be part of a community of strong female leaders, apply to be a part of our DIWA program. Join us in our movement of empowering female leaders through increasing their confidence and fostering community. 

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Advancing WSE in ASEAN Report

The goal of this report is to identify the critical gaps in the realm of Women Social Entrepreneurship, as well as promote what enables Women Social Entrepreneurs (WSEs). We analyzed both 150 quantitative surveys and 30 in-depth interviews with Ashoka Fellows from Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand in order to arrive at our key insights on the uniquely feminine approach of WSEs, common barriers, and more. We have highlights catered to social entrepreneurs, investors and funders, government, and partners and stakeholders. 

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Community Building

We are continuously looking to uplift and empower communities, and we are committed to growing strong relationships within and beyond the realm of WSEs. 

To grow our community of Women Social Entrepreneurs (WSEs) and supporters, we have (and will continue to) create spaces for them to convene, collaborate, and connect. 

We hosted a virtual summit to bring together some of the most prominent women leaders of the region with corporates, entrepreneurs, Changemakers, and more to foster a world that is more welcoming and celebratory of female leadership. 

Stories and Ecosystem Findings

We think it is important to humanize our findings, so we like to highlight stories of WSEs! We also hold roundtable discussions to learn from experts and those on the ground. 

Our Stories of Impact series consists of videos and articles that showcase the challenges Southeast Asian Women Social Entrepreneurs (WSEs) face and their corresponding solutions that change broken systems for the good of all.

We also collaborated with S&P Global Foundation and Deutsche Bank to hold roundtables learnings from ecosystems, bringing in influential Women Social Entrepreneurs (WSEs) and showcasing their inspirational conversations.

Coming Soon

DIWA Testimonials

Take a look at what DIWA has done for the Southeast Asian women social entrepreneurs who have graduated from the program! 

DIWA equipped me with a better understanding of how to drive scalable and sustainable change through an organization built on a firm foundation of purpose, care, and courage. This program reminds me that there is an ocean of support waiting for people who are willing to put themselves out there.

Z Santillan
Founder of School of Deliberate Futures

Now, more than ever, reputable organizations like Ashoka, Deutsche Bank, and S&P Global Foundation have raised the bar in gender lens investing. The continuous support in enabling women to progress to leadership positions has put a shared responsibility for mainstreaming women's advancement.

Dr. Pria K.
Founder of Jujucare Medic
Dr.Pria K

DIWA has helped me form a bond with my peers and coaches, and they have become a support system that keeps me going with courage and compassion.

Chanakarn Kachonseree ​(Thailand)
Founder of MindVenture​
Photo of Chanakarn Kachonseree ​

 Before joining DIWA, I was a bit scared as I am still young and haven't done much in my field. But after all the workshops, I felt more confident and I now believe that one day I can be like all the other successful female leaders, as long as I keep on working hard and believing in myself. 

Tram Anh Pham
Founder of Good Human
Tram Anh Pham

DIWA helped me determine my leadership style as a manager. It gave me insights into building a product through design thinking and broadened my knowledge on how to raise funding.

Amanda Celine
Product Manager of Anotasi
Amanda Celine

DIWA not only gave me resources to develop my social enterprise but also connected me with experts and a network of lady leaders to grow myself.

Huyen Nguyen​ (Vietnam)
Founder of EVOL Vietnam​
Photo of Huyen Nguyen​