Do you want to change the world?


Social innovation, community and collaboration is at the heart of everything we do. That’s why we created our social incubator, inc.

inc. is part of our drive to develop innovative and sustainable ways to drive change across our communities, to invest in their future through a range of initiatives that improve life chances and remove barriers.

With 21 offers of support, our 20/21 cohort are changing the world.


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Our programme

Our unique programme draws on the benefits, resources and expertise of a highly successful and established social organisation and its people:

  • A strong core syllabus covering all areas of business, development, growth and ethics
  • Personal and team development through psychometric profiling and DISC, to help you improve productivity, teamwork and communication
  • Mentoring and coaching to support personal growth from successful social entrepreneurs who know your journey
  • Offices/ digital spaces offering shared workspaces for you to work with others
  • Access to funding and investment
  • Opportunities to gain insight to shape your business through pilot projects within Aster communities
  • Access to our diverse 100,000 customers to help develop your ideas
  • Expert advice and support from the inc. team
  • An entrepreneurial community of peers to collaborate with and provide support
  • Alignment to the Aster Group brand
  • Access to Aster partners and networks
  • Promotion of your social business through communication channels
  • Mental wellness support keeping you happy, healthy and resilient.

“inc. has provided us with actionable insights into the development of Padlock through expert-led workshops, market-leading mentoring and a vast community of bespoke support that has accelerated our progress as a social business.” Eoin Heffernan, founder of Padlock

Inc has the creativity factor. I genuinely feel supported.

Arinola Araba, founder of bMoneywize

Our 2021-22 Cohort

Our Version Media CIC
Co-Opts Ltd
Saku Mind
Equal Education
Event Cycle
Family Psychology
Film Crew 4u
Humans of Weston
Construction Carbon Ltd
Our Version Media CIC

Our Version Media CIC

Veronica Gordon

Positive and authentic representation of black and marginalised communities

Founded by a broadcast journalist and community activist, Our Version Media CIC increases positive and authentic representation of black communities in the south by equipping people with digital media skills to tell their own stories.

This is increasing self-esteem, confidence and wellbeing of communities demonised by the press. They empower people with skills to shine a spotlight on their real stories, cultures, diversity, and resilience, tackling negative stereotypes at the same time. As an official media partner of Southampton's UK City of Culture 2025 Bid, they amplify stories from the city's diverse communities.

Their work also includes increasing representation of black communities in other areas of life: They run a Black-Owned Business Directory that supports Southampton's black business owners; they provide diversity and inclusion services to help public sector organisations to reach, engage with and improve their services for black communities.

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Twitter / LinkedIn / Instagram / Facebook

Our Version Media CIC website
Co-Opts Ltd

Co-Opts Ltd

Kevin Flanagan and Jeremy Christy

Increasing time and saving lives

Co-Opts product is a device that records, transcribes, and summarises mental health therapy sessions.  This created with a vision to deliver up to 80% increase in productivity for mental health therapists through the saving of time; as well as other benefits such as reducing the negative impact of; multi-tasking, inconsistent note taking; stress on the therapist; the impact of noise and bias on the notes; separating what was said from the therapeutic interpretation and offers the benefits of bridging between sessions for the patient.

Lastly it offers a comprehensive way to gather the data at scale necessary for innovative research.  This increase in time to work with those in need of mental health support never more needed due to the impact of CV19.

The device is neither reliant on cloud services nor complicated IT infrastructure for its operation. It's portable and normal operation requires the use of 3 buttons. It is designed to be secure and does not store any data either internally or in a cloud.

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 Twitter / Facebook Linkedin

Co-opts Website
Saku Mind

Saku Mind

Rosalind Mann

A wellbeing app enabling you to bloom through nature

Saku Mind is a mental wellbeing app which gets you and your fellow Saku Explorers outdoors. It engages you with activities which are good for you and the planet, all relating to the five ways of wellbeing: connect, give, take notice, be active and keep learning.

The Saku app tracks the impact of the activities on your mood, wellbeing, and the environment. Your Saku avatar tree will grow as your wellbeing blooms. You will be able to connect with other Saku Explorers as the Community element is developed.

Saku helps its Explorers to feel more connected with those around them and to benefit from the healing aspects of nature. This in turn means Saku users are more mindful and custodial of the natural environment in their area and beyond.

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Twitter / LinkedIn / Facebook

Saku Mind website
Equal Education

Equal Education

Kim Rihal

The bridge for a brighter future for disadvantaged students

Equal Education is a social enterprise that provides tuition for children in the care system and those with special education needs and disabilities. There are currently almost 80,000 children in the care system in England.

Educational outcomes for this group are, on average, 30% lower than their peers, they are far less likely to go University, and more likely to be unemployed. Their mission is to improve outcomes for this group and close the educational attainment gap.

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 Twitter / Instagram / Facebook / LinkedIn


Equal Education website


Mady Korada

In just 1Hour you can change a child’s future

A lot can happen in 1Hour. Lives can be forever changed - for better or for worse - in just sixty short minutes. 1Hour tips the scales for the better by providing children with extra educational opportunities.  Right now, there is a severe shortage of resources for children learning in areas that will make them independent in the global economy. In just one hour, volunteers help children to develop skills in subjects like coding, personal finance, and robotics, amongst other areas which could also include housing and or construction.

Students can build on these skills throughout their education, ultimately increasing financial inclusion and removing barriers to work opportunities. They do this by matching digital volunteers with schools and simplify giving time through enabling remote volunteering. Volunteers can search a suitable school based on their interests and expertise. Within a few clicks they can be donating their time, expertise to inspire the next generation. Anywhere in the world. All they need is a device and a spare hour!

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1Hour website
Event Cycle

Event Cycle

Chantal Kerr-Sheppard and Carina Jandt

Turning waste into opportunities

Event Cycle is an initiative that takes useful materials which would otherwise go to waste from the events industry and repurposes them with charities, social enterprises, and community groups, as well as back into the events industry. The service tackles the problem of sustainability in one industry and creates a positive, social impact in another, feeding into a circular economy by keeping materials in use and out of landfill.

From graphics to giveaways, planks of wood to plants, there's a vast array of items that arise in events alongside a unique request list from the non-for-profit sector too. Charities sign up, tell Event Cycle where they are, what they need and how they'll use it, creating a database of organisations across the UK. Event organisers tell Event Cycle what they have, and where it will be, and a home is found for the items on a local first approach, reducing emissions on transport where possible. Their revenue comes from this point as a handling fee - for charities the process is free.

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Facebook / Linkedin

Event Cycle Website
Family Psychology

Family Psychology

Dr Tom Jefford

Empowering families to have a happier, healthier life

Family Psychology Mutual offer evidence-based interventions such as Multi Systemic Therapy and functional family therapy to deliver contracted services to Local Authorities for families where a young person is at risk of entering care or custody.

These programmes are licenced and are delivered with high fidelity to the therapeutic model which have rigorous quality assurance processes in place as well as defined techniques, underpinned by systemic family therapy principles. Delivered at home by trained systemic therapists, social workers, and mental health nurses their interest is in high quality and outcomes which can be sustained in the long term. Several of their services are set up as social impact bonds in collaboration with a social investor so are outcome payment driven.

Family Psychology Mutual seek to be a leading provider of evidence-based interventions for families.

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Family Psychology Mutual Website
Film Crew 4u

Film Crew 4u

Billy Stevenson

Hollywood for the rest of us!

We introduce the many aspects of filmmaking to people who have been struggling in life, over-coming adversity or suffering from mental health issues. Giving people new direction while empowering them with career options.

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Film Crew 4u Website
Humans of Weston

Humans of Weston

Bev G Star

Community creativity for all

Humans of Weston (HOW) provides opportunities for communities and for those who wish to find purpose through creativity. This includes community learning courses in the creative arts, access for people to be able to contribute to the local environment, its culture and most importantly; create opportunities for those people who wish to use the skills they have or the skills they wish to grow.

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Humans of Weston website
Construction Carbon Ltd

Construction Carbon Ltd

Tom Scott and Gilbert Lenox-King

Investing in the future through reducing construction carbon

At Construction Carbon we provide a simple way to calculate carbon emissions for anyone undertaking a construction project of any size. Through our certification, we can verify any construction project is net-zero at the point of practical completion. We ensure that carbon emissions associated with the entire lifecycle of the building are assessed and reduced at the design stage and residual upfront carbon emissions from construction are offset providing a net-zero enabled building.

We are established by experienced professionals working in the built environment, backed by the leading experts in this field and a member of UK Green Building Council.  We are regulated by RICS, supported by The Imperial College’s Grantham Institute for Climate Change and the Environment’s Greenhouse programme and part of London’s new Centre for Climate Change Innovation.

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Construction Carbon Ltd website

Why inc.?

I cannot thank inc. enough for all the support they have given me to develop my social business. The personal support that is offer through this program, is what set it apart from other incubators I have been a part of.

Dhivya Venkatachalam

Coming January 2022


inc.ademy builds people to change the world and is aimed at Aster customers at an early stage idea or vision to make a difference across our communities and further.

It’s for for budding social entrepreneurs at either idea/concept or the early start up stage of their journey from 0 to year one of your business. If that's you we'd love to hear from you.

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Being part of the inc. programme has given me access to the resources and support of a much larger organisation and that brings with it experience and opportunities to collaborate. Learning through the syllabus helps me to understand where I can make improvements while also acting as a partner along the journey.

Stevie Mitchell, founder of CDUK


inc. success stories

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We feel incredibly privileged to be a part of the inc. story. We love the fact that they truly believe in helping sustainable businesses 'for good' become successful. The support network and programme content cannot be faulted. I would strongly recommend any social enterprise to consider this programme to accelerate their growth.

Dan Willis, founder of Well Good


Our inc. alumni network help our social entrepreneurs to translate and apply the learning from the inc. syllabus to their business.

Owning and running your own business is like a mental rollercoaster ride; Empowering highs and disheartening lows. Being part of inc. allows each of us to celebrate those highs and support those lows together. I gain so much from our weekly huddles and 1:2:1s.

Kirsty, Well Cool Clothing