Rebekah Lin’s foray into the philanthropic sector was in 2011 when she joined the committee of the Yellow Ribbon Fund. Believing that young people are catalysts for social impact, she and her friends started The Social Co. in 2014, which spearheaded the 50 For 50 movement that raised funds for lesser-known charities in Singapore.


An early career as a photojournalist brought her to countries such as Ethiopia and Bangladesh, sparking conviction that she wanted to effect change. She started 50 For 50, with co-founder Cheryl Chong, effectively challenging the stereotype that youths are apathetic and diffident to social issues. The movement of 50 individuals (aged 18 to 34) raised $4.5 million for charity within 19 months. The Social Co.’s next endeavour, 1 For 1, aims to get all Singaporeans to donate $1 to lesser-known causes.


“Building credibility was always key for me. I didn’t want to just talk about making a difference. I wanted to be a doer. Working with the charities also proved difficult as I realised how little I knew about what they did — one cannot assume that they are always looking for money or help. I’m mindful now to always start with the needs of the organisation before designing any new movements.”