United Way of Tarrant County is Accepting Applications for Social Innovation Contest KERNEL

The Fort Worth-area competition will award finalists with seed funding and resources to solve social problems in the community.


United Way of Tarrant County is now accepting applications for its third annual social innovation contest, KERNEL. 

The local chapter of the global nonprofit focused on strengthening communities established KERNEL in 2016 to encourage community members to come up with solutions for social issues.

Last year at KERNEL Live!, three finalists received a collective total of $35,000 to implement their solutions, which ranged from teaching employment skills to homeless women to providing room makeovers for children who experience abuse in their homes. The event was inspired by the TV show Shark Tank, and finalists pitched solutions before five judges and a live audience in the Four Day Weekend improvisational group theater in Sundance Square in Fort Worth. 

Applications for this year’s KERNEL will be due by 5 p.m. Aug. 10 via email. Entrepreneurs, businesses, nonprofits, and other groups and individuals are eligible to participate. 

A cover page, proposal narrative, work plan, project budget and finances, articles of incorporation, and a video describing the solution should be submitted in the application.

Finalists for the program will be announced Sept. 12 and will receive mentoring through the end of October leading up to the KERNEL Live! pitch competition on Nov. 1.

Judges will select solutions which have the greatest potential to succeed. Winners will receive seed funding and resources from UWTC to implement their solutions over the next year. A winning solution will provide social impact to the community and have a sustainable revenue model.


3 Finalists Earn $35K in Grants at KERNEL LIVE!

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