Iceland’s Frumbjörg, started by Brandur Karlsson in cooperation with Sjálfsbjörg, the Icelandic national federation of the disabled, is an Innovation Center for Mobility. The initiative’s goal is to provide the disabled with the opportunities for employment and develop innovations within the healthcare and social sectors.
The social entrepreneurship venture is meant to provide individuals with disabilities office space and guidance for innovation and entrepreneurship activities, through partnerships Frumbjörg has with innovation centers in Iceland such as Klak Innovit, Innovation Center Iceland, and the University of Reykjavík. The idea is that individuals or teams will be able to apply to partake in the venture and receive office space and support in return for a small piece of equity, similar to other incubators and accelerators.
A successful crowdfunding campaign
Frumbjörg ran a successful campaign on the Icelandic crowdfunding platform Karolinafund.com, where the team raised a total of €39,000, almost double their initial goal of €20,000. The funding is to kick-start the venture and renovate a space in the Sjálfsbjörg, Reykjavík to accommodate offices
The campaign was given a boost by the digital agency UENO, who pledged to match every donation made to the project between December 16th and 30th, up to a total of $15K.
Brandur explained the project to Startup Iceland in December, saying:
“Governments are becoming more aware of the looming social problems due to an ageing population and decline in childbirths. The age pyramid is flattening out which means that more people will be depending on the work of fewer hands. That is why we need to start working on these problems today. Smart houses, assistive robots, health monitoring equipment and gamified rehabilitation are examples of emerging fields bringing exciting new solutions to our modern society.”
Brandur has been announced as the first speaker at the Startup Iceland 2016 conference, where he will discuss his journey, Frumbjörg, as well as other projects he has been working on.
This article was originally posted on Nordurskautid, Iceland’s premier outlet for news and discussion about the Icelandic Startup and Tech scene