2015 Community Innovation Fair Application The 2015 Community Innovation Fair will provide opportunities for residents to highlight their entrepreneurship ideas and vision for neighborhood vitality in West Bloomington. This neighborhood is rich in history with people ready to lead the charge for change to prosperity and sustainability. On April 25, 2015 from 2 pm to 5 pm, the fair will give residents the opportunity to share their ideas for future business ventures or neighborhood improvement in West Bloomington. The fair will also provide opportunities for non-profit organizations to showcase their social enterprise ideas. We anticipate innovative investment opportunities. Everyone attending the event will have a voice in voting for the best ideas for implementation and the 2 best resident ideas will receive a stipend to launch their concept. Residents and non-profit organizations are eligible to submit a proposal with priority given to projects benefiting the West Bloomington area. • • • • • Categories Important instructions, including submission format instructions and selection criteria Special expert personalized advising opportunity for residents Acceptance and next steps Additional questions Community Innovation Fair Pitch Categories The Community Innovation Fair pitch should be program-focused and focus on either: • • • • • Neighborhood Improvement Projects within West Bloomington Community Engagement Activities within West Bloomington Youth Activities and Engagement for West Bloomington Residents Social Innovation Small Business Entrepreneurship Instructions For Submitting Community Innovation Fair Application What is a Community Innovation Fair? The Community Innovation Fair is a unique opportunity for residents and non-profit organizations to present their new idea in the format of a booth a street fair in the Friendship Park area. The Community Innovation Fair booths are ideas that are being developed, meaning that the ideas are in the brainstorming, early development, or early implementation stage. The goal is to have the booth showcase the idea and invite feedback from residents and community stakeholders. This format provides presenters with an opportunity to formulate their idea, collaborate with others interested in their idea, and receive feedback and ideas. The goal is a dynamic fair in which participants and attendees will network and collaborate about the innovative ideas, and the hope is that we will see many of these ideas effectively implemented in the future. Of those selected, the top 10 resident applications will receive $100 prize to develop their booth as well as a mentor to guide them in its creation. At the Community Innovation Fair attendees will have the opportunity to vote on their favorite concept with the winner receiving $2,500 in start-up funds and the second place finisher receiving $1,500 in start-up funds. Small Business Entrepreneurship applicants may or may not be eligible for the resident winner stipend depending upon the stage of the concept. All applicants will be notified at time of acceptance if they qualify to compete for the stipend. Format: The selected participants will be given a 10 x 10 outdoor space on the day of the fair, April 25th starting at noon. The participants will have 2 hours to set up their booth and a pop tent and one folding table will be made available if needed. The Fair will begin at 2:00 p.m. and attendees will be able to vote on their favorite idea. There will be separate voting for resident booths and non-profit booths. Voting will end at 4:30 p.m. with the winners being announced at 5:00 p.m. How to Apply We welcome submissions pertaining to: • • • • • Neighborhood Improvement Projects within West Bloomington Community Building/Engagement Activities within West Bloomington Youth Activities and Engagement for West Bloomington Residents Social Innovation Small Business Entrepreneurship Application Submission Format Narrative: 1,000 word maximum written submission (longer narratives will not be reviewed and will be automatically rejected) OR a 3 minute video OR a 3 minute in person presentation at Mid-Central Community Action on the afternoon of March 3, 2015. If you wish to do a presentation, you must sign up in advance by contacting Jennifer Baker at JenniferB@mccainc.org or by telephone at (309) 834-9237. The submission needs to include problem, solution, innovation, based in evidence, expected impact, management and financing, stage of idea, and your "ask". If submitting a written proposal, please include the headers (i.e. problem, solution, innovation, feasibility, expected impact, management and financing, stage of idea, your "ask"). The headers do not count towards the word count. • • • • • • • • Problem: <enter your text here> Solution: <enter your text here> Innovation: <enter your text here> Feasibility: <enter your text here> What is the Expected Impact? <enter your text here> Management and Financing: <enter your text here> Describe Stage of Idea: <enter your text here> Your "ask": Describe your current program development needs. How are you hoping to advance your program or idea by presenting a pitch at the Community Innovation Fair? For example, are you hoping to receive feedback on a specific aspect of your program, connect with advisors, connect with prospective volunteers, network with others involved in your field, identify funding sources, etc. If selected for presentation at the fair, you will include your "ask" as part of your booth. Application Selection Criteria Residents and Non-Profit Organizations are eligible to submit an application. The application should include the details described below. The application will be evaluated based on the level of innovation, the expected impact and description of goals, and the details that indicate that it will be effective. The application will be reviewed according to the following criteria: • • • • • • • • • Problem: Describe the problem that you are trying to solve. Solution: What is your proposed innovation? Why is it important? How will it be implemented? Innovation: How is the idea new and innovative? Feasibility: Why will it work? What evidence do you have to support your claim? What is the Expected Impact? What will be the outcomes, and what metrics will be used to measure the outcomes? Management and Financing: Who will lead the enterprise? What are the proposed or anticipated funding sources or revenues? The application submitter must be directly involved with the leadership or management of the program or organization. Describe Stage of Idea: Are you in the brainstorming stage, early development, or early implementation stage? What is your progress? How much funding, if any, has been raised? When was the idea initially developed? Ideas in the brainstorming, early development, and early implementation stage will be considered equally. Your "Ask": How are you hoping to advance your program or idea by presenting at the Community Innovation Fair? If the audience is sold on your idea, how can they invest human or financial resources into your project? Do you need funds to launch or scale your project? Would you like feedback on a specific component of your idea? Are you seeking advisors or local partners? Quality: Applications will be evaluated based upon level of community impact, innovativeness, feasibility and community need. Application Review and Selection Community Innovation Fair applications must be received by 4:30 p.m. on March 2, 2015 or be scheduled for a presentation on March 3, 2015. The highest quality applications will be selected for a booth at the Community Innovation Fair. Of those selected, the top 10 resident applications will be provided $100 in funding for their booth. We encourage you to submit your application as soon as you decide that you would like to present. Submitters will be notified about the decision on their application by March 20, 2015 by 4:30 p.m. Application Acceptance and Next Steps If my application is accepted, what are the next steps? • • • The applicant will be notified that their application has been reviewed and accepted for presentation at the Community Innovation Fair. Funding to the resident applicants selected for the Community Fair will be made available at the time the applicant is notified of their acceptance. At the time of acceptance, resident applicants will be notified of professional that is willing to mentor them in the development of their booth. It is not required that the applicant utilize the identified professional mentor, but it is highly recommended. • Accepted applicants must adhere to deadlines and guidelines, and they must promptly respond to communication. What should be included in the booth at the Community Innovation Fair? If you are accepted to have a booth at the Community Innovation Fair, you should include all of the important items in your application: problem, solution, innovation, evidence-base, impact, management and financing as well as the stage of your idea and your "ask". When you are creating your booth, you should consider what you hope to learn from the experience. What type of ideas/plans and obstacles are you currently working through? What type of people do you hope to connect with at the conference and during your session? The answers to these questions may help you to highlight certain aspect of your booth and de-emphasize others. The most effective booths will explain your innovation in a way that is immediately understood by the audience. By briefly stopping at the booth, the audience should understand why the idea is needed, how the idea will be implemented, and how the impact will occur. The booth should provide concrete examples and real-life stories to illustrate the plan. Questions? If you have any questions, please email Jennifer Baker at JenniferB@mccainc.org or by telephone at (309) 8349237.
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