Why are the Economy League and Billy Penn doing this?
We want to support smart approaches and encourage straegic risk-taking in addressing complex social challenges. Philly’s rich food assets and economy--our great urban agriculture, vibrant restaurant scene, proximity to fertile farmland, and much more--exist alongside deep poverty and rising hunger. We want to find ways to leverage the former to attack the latter, and we believe you have innovative ideas for doing that.
Who should apply?
Anyone with a good idea for leveraging food-related assets to address poverty and hunger is eligible to apply. You do not need to be part of an existing organization. We will give preference to teams (up to 4 people) over individual applicants.
What kinds of ideas are we looking for?
We’re looking for ideas that:
- leverage regional food assets to attack the root causes of hunger and poverty;
- embrace creative approaches to collaboration and partnership;
- can be piloted at a small scale;
- have the potential to be replicated or scaled, and;
- are not overly duplicative of services or programs already in place in the Philadelphia area.
How do we define collaboration and partnership?
We will give preference to teams that include members from different sectors and types of organizations that bring complementary strengths to the team’s approach. They may bring access to the community you’re aiming to serve, expertise in an area crucial to your solution, or key resources. We’d like to see evidence that each team member’s resources are being used creatively and to the fullest. We’re committed to collaboration because we know it’s the only way the enormous and complex challenges of hunger and poverty can be addressed.
We’re looking for ideas that can be piloted at small scale. What do we mean by ‘pilot’?
We’re defining a pilot as a small-scale program/effort that can be quickly launched and implemented using the resources provided and show some short-term outcomes that indicate whether the approach has promise. We will also consider awarding funds for the expansion of existing programs with the goal of reaching new populations or communities.
Are videos submissions required?
No. But teams do have to be ready to deliver a public pitch for your idea by February 19. We’ll provide you with some help developing your idea and your pitch along the way.
Do teams have to be available on the dates of the Full City interviews, rapid incubator workshop, or main event?
Sorry, these dates are non-negotiable. Participants must be available on February 1, February 12, and February 19.
What is the rapid incubator workshop?
Teams selected as finalists will spend a half-day with with experts across different fields - food-related businesses, entrepreneurship, social services, and others - and have the opportunity to get one-on-one coaching and feedback to refine their proposals and pitches for the main event on February 19.
How can the $5,000 prize money be used?
Use of the prize money will be flexible, and the Economy League will work with the winning team to finalize a budget for the prize money.