Our Story

Since 1999, we have been involved with businesses dedicated to economic development in marginalized communities. We have discovered that entrepreneurs operating in marginalized communities face tremendous challenges (government corruption, illiteracy, lack of infrastructure, limited access to markets and capital, and many others) that make it nearly impossible to do business profitably in such regions.

Additionally, the people in these communities have very little access to basic needs such as medial care, education, vocational training, running water, adequate nutrition, sufficient housing, transportation, and the list goes on. The populations of these communities need jobs, but they need more than jobs. They need change in every aspect of their lives.

Marginalized communities are usually too broken to support sustainable businesses, so it’s no surprise that most entrepreneurs end up packing up and moving home. What if these entrepreneurs had the support of a nonprofit that would help their people thrive—and in turn enable their businesses to succeed?

Many charities provide only development support to marginalized communities. Many businesses provide only jobs. What we learned was that real transformation must include both. Read about the impact this strategy has had on our communities.

Our Impact

1999

We were incorporated as a 501(c)3 under the name First Asia Development and spent our first years partnering with a textile company to benefit impoverished communities in Tibetan areas of China.
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2010

First Asia Development partnered with two entrepreneurs starting sustainable businesses in northern India.
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2013

We changed the name of our nonprofit to JoyCorps (pronounced “Joy Core,” like Peace Corps) to express our strategy of working together to cultivate joy in marginalized communities.
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2013-2017

Throughout our time in north India, we have partnered with dozens of nonprofit organizations focused on empowering marginalized people.
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2015

We began a partnership with an Indian woman in New Delhi, India who ran both an export business and several nonprofits for orphans and residents of a local slum.
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2017

We are expanding our model to the Golden Triangle, a remote area near the Thai-Burmese border.
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