For Suzanne, Swee Lin and Yuet Kim, being one of the five finalists in the Chivas Venture 2018 for their successful social enterprise the Picha Project, was nothing short of a dream. Winning US$50,000 in funding for The Picha Project, they emerged as the only Malaysian startup to have made it this far.
Aiming to empower refugee families in the country, the initiative provides food catering and delivery services with more than 52,000 meals to clients like the World Bank, Bank Negara, UNICEF, UCSI Group, TalentCorp, EY, BFM, The Edge and Maybank.
CEO and co-founder of the Picha Project Yuet Kim revealed how she felt about the win saying, “It feels unbelievable for us to be in the top 5 and tell our story to 3,000 people in the room as well as those who were streaming live.”
She also said, “It was nerve-wracking but I also felt proud to be the only Asian in the top 5 and to put Malaysia on the map. It was a great honour for The Picha Project to be the voice for the voiceless on the international stage.”
As for the future of the Picha Project, Yuet Kim says that “We’ll get more families on board to work with us in the long term. This will increase our potential for growth and help us develop a solid voice in the future – to show that something positive can happen to refugees in Asia and anywhere else.”
UK’s Change Please which empowers the homeless community by training them to be baristas, was announced as the overall winner (US$350,000). The other three finalists who also received funding were Netherlands’ Mestic (US$200,000), Spain’s BraiBook (US$100,000), and the US’ WATER Labs.