'Change Dah Story' is social innovation challenge that is looking for innovative ideas and business models to improve the future of vulnerable youth in Belize. The challenge is promoted by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the Compete Caribbean Partnership Facility (CCPF) in collaboration with the Belize Trade and Investment Development Service (BELTRAIDE), the Belize Department of Youth Services (DYS), and with the support of various local organizations and international partners.

Crime and violence are major social problems in Belize, and are issues that especially impact vulnerable youths, both as victims and offenders.

How can creative and technological solutions bring relief to youth communities, especially those affected by or those vulnerable to crime and violence?

The ‘Change dah Story’ challenge is an opportunity for creative, innovative and committed solvers that are willing to propose business ideas that aim at bringing relief and solutions to this relevant social problem. This approach of seeking solutions with the community through creativity, innovation, technology can help transform and ‘Change dah Story’ of young people in Belize.

This is the first challenge under the initiative ‘Ideas for Change Belize’, which aims to promote social innovation and entrepreneurship as tools to transform social and environmental problems in Belize.


Categories were identified and prioritized through data analysis, interviews, focus groups and collaborative methodologies involving youths, parents, counselors, young inmates, academic experts, and educators in Belize to better understand the causes that are considered more relevant to the recurrence of this problem in society.

Proposals that address one or more of the 4 specific categories can be submitted.

1. Education

Young males and females struggle to go through the traditional education system: high cost, quality concerns, lack of interest and limited technical skills are some of the causes.

We are looking for ideas and business models proposing access to alternative education through innovation and technology.

2. Recreation

Young boys and girls are frequently left alone in their spare time, especially after school, with limited activities and guidance on how to deal with everyday issues making them vulnerable to crime and violence.

We are looking for ideas and business models that aim to provide youth with recreation, sports, culture and learning experiences in spare time.

3. Parenting

Early parenthood, single parenthood, and lack of mentorship and limited parental guidance are some of the causes that make youth vulnerable to violence and crime.

We are looking for ideas and business models that aim to establish a support structure for parents, through training, counseling, employment, and other alternatives.

4. Employment

Unemployment makes young people more vulnerable to being involved in violence and crime. Youths struggle to develop their talents, find their purpose and reach for opportunities, while many are affected by stigmatization, profiling and “having a record”, among other issues.

We are looking for ideas and business models that incorporate vulnerable youth, and are aimed at building a support network among them, creating conditions for skills development, introduction to new technologies and building soft skills.



The Challenge will select up to 15 proposals that best meet the evaluation criteria, as finalists. These proponents and teams will participate in a 2-day pre-incubation bootcamp to receive training in social entrepreneurship and business models, as well as user centered design and pitching ideas.

All finalists will pitch their proposals to an expert panel of judges, which will select up to 3 proposals to receive incubation sessions (training/mentoring) and seed capital (initial funding), both valued in USD 10,000 per proposal, in order to put their ideas and prototypes into work.




The Challenge is open to individuals and organizations, including: innovators, entrepreneurs, startups and established companies; students and professionals; tertiary and higher education institutions; NGO, civic society, community or grassroots organizations. Participation can be individual or as a team. Proponents must be over 18 years of age, Belizean citizens (living across the country or abroad) or foreigners with legal residence in Belize.

Read the guidelines before applying.


* Dates are approximate and subject to change

  • Launch + Ideathon

    October 10th, 2019

  • Submission of proposals

    October 10th 2019 to January 12th, 2020

  • Deadline for submissions:

    January 12th, 2020 (11:59 pm GMT-6 Belize time)

  • Evaluation of proposals:

    January 2020

  • Announcement of finalist proposals:

    January, 2020

  • 2-day Bootcamp for finalists:

    3rd week of February, 2020

  • Pitch event and selection of winners:

    3rd week of February, 2020

  • Incubation sessions and implementation of proposals:

    Beginning on April 2020



idb 60 years

Since its creation in 1959, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has supported the regional development of Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) through innovative and effective solutions to the challenges for economic, social, institutional and environmental development in the region. IDB’s work throughout these years, supporting its clients in the design of projects and offering financial and technical assistance and knowledge services in support of various interventions, has played a key role in laying the foundations for sustainable development and the reduction of poverty and inequality in the region.




The Compete Caribbean Partnership Facility (CCPF) is a private sector development that delivers innovative and practical solutions that stimulate economic growth, increase productivity and foster innovation and competitiveness. We work in 13 countries across the Caribbean region. CCPF is a partnership between the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the UK Department for International Development (DFID).



The Belize Trade and Investment Development Service (Beltraide) is a statutory body of the Government of Belize. It as a national economic development agency, with the mission of enhancing Belize's prosperity by fostering investor confidence, entrepreneurship, business growth and innovation.

dys belize

The Department of Youth Services is the Government of Belize’s principal agency responsible for the development, implementation, and coordination of policies, program and projects to support the holistic development of Belizean young people. DYS has a leading role in the Government’s youth mainstreaming strategy.