Previous research on information and communication technologies (ICT) in developing countries has documented multiple variations in technology acceptance, use and work practices. While these variations are mainly seen as culturally, historically and contextually based, recent research suggests that these can also occur because because new actors, different from the state, market and international organizations traditionally providing access to the technology, appear. Richard Heeks introduced the notion of grassroots development. Here organizations spring up from within poor communities as a result of ICT-enabled empowerment and appropriation of technology. These grassroots organizations can transform the processes and structures of the digital economy by transforming (frequently through improvisation) those not previously having access to technologies from victims through to consumers innovators. However, there is a lack of solid research in this area. This study aims to answer this challenge through the 15-year history of grassroots development in Minsk, Belarus. Based on interviews and other sources, we focus on work practices underlining how grassroots models were created and developed by people lacking significant financial and organizational resources and in conditions apparently unfavorable for innovation creation.