At The Sprout Fund, we believe that truly innovative change begins at the grassroots. We believe that small-scale financial support for early-stage ideas helps to push the boundaries of what’s possible and amplify voices that might otherwise go unheard. Since 2001, we’ve invested more than $7 million in people and ideas catalyzing change in our hometown of Pittsburgh.
Through occasional catalytic funding opportunities, The Sprout Fund supports innovative ideas and creative people that are making an impact in Pittsburgh and the surrounding communities of Southwestern Pennsylvania. Sprout’s current funding programs, listed below, could be a good fit for your idea!
My Brother’s Keeper Pittsburgh Digital Literacy Collaborative
In partnership with Allegheny County and the City of Pittsburgh, through the generous support of The Heinz Endowments, and on behalf of the local My Brother’s Keeper Committee, The Sprout Fund is seeking proposals for partnerships that create opportunities for youth, particularly young men of color ages 16-24, to acquire technological, social, and academic skills that will enhance their quality of life and ability to secure future employment. Each participating organization will receive collaborative support, technical assistance, and $5,000 in grant funding through the MBK Pittsburgh Digital Literacy Collaborative. Applications are due April 14, 2017.
100 Days of US
The Sprout Fund is pleased to announce awards of $120,000 to 27 projects leading a civic response to the first #100days! Pittsburghers are setting their own agendas for the first 100 days of the new administration. See the people and projects supported by community members and The Sprout Fund here >>
Grand Ideas $1,000 Seed Awards
To promote innovation at the grassroots, Sprout is asking the community “What’s your Grand Idea? How would you use $1,000 for an innovative community project?”
As an occasional special opportunity Sprout’s Seed Award program focuses support on small project requests of up to $1,000 from individuals and organizations to support innovative approaches to community projects and civic engagement in Pittsburgh. The application period for 2016 is closed. Check back in 2017 for new deadlines and opportunities.
Support for One Northside
One Northside is a community-driven initiative to improve the quality of life in all 18 neighborhoods of the Northside. Since early 2014, hundreds of Northside residents have engaged with local leaders and stakeholders in community-wide conversations to create a shared agenda for the revitalization of this vital component of the greater Pittsburgh region. In partnership with The Buhl Foundation, The Sprout Fund provides catalytic support to advance the One Northside vision through citizen-led micro grants. Eligible projects are led by Northside residents and take place in the City of Pittsburgh’s 18 Northside neighborhoods.
For Youth: The Change Machine
As a young person, how would you use up to $500 to make a positive change in your community?
The Change Machine provides $500 grants to support, celebrate, and showcase unique youth-led initiatives with the power to incite positive change. Change Machine projects are innovative, non-traditional ideas that focus on current issues and challenges faced by youth, and inspire a diverse group of participants to be more active, involved, and civically-engaged. Applications are encouraged from youth up to age 18 and requests are accepted on a rolling basis and batched for review every 3 months. The application period for 2016 is closed. Check back in 2017 for new deadlines and opportunities.
Remake Learning Grants
Remake Learning Grants are small-scale funding awards to catalyze innovative learning projects that inspire educators and students to explore new ways of teaching and learning. Grants are available up to $10,000. Decisions are made twice annually to support summer/fall and winter/spring activities in Pittsburgh, Southwestern Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. Applications are not currently being accepted.
Remake Learning Sponsorship
Remake Learning sponsorship supports events and activities that provide educators and other learning innovators with opportunities for exchange of knowledge and professional development; or, provide children, youth, and families with opportunities to participate in creative and innovative learning experiences at public events. Applications are not currently being accepted.
The Sprout Fund provides conference stipends to enable people to participate in events of regional and (inter)national importance. Conference stipends are available to individuals and small delegations of people that count themselves as part of the Remake Learning Network. Conference stipends promote knowledge sharing, communication, and collaboration among Network members, and raise greater local and national awareness of the Remake Learning movement. Requests to attend conferences and events focused on EdTech, Digital Media and Learning (DML), STEAM learning, the maker movement, and similar topics are welcomed. Applications are not currently being accepted.