The Sprout Fund offers two categories of catalytic funding support with distinctions based on target audience and focus. Learning Innovation funding programs support projects that impact children, youth, and teens through new approaches to teaching and learning. Community Innovation funding programs support projects that foster creative approaches to civic engagement and community life at the grassroots.
Applicants are strongly encouraged to attend a free information session to meet with Sprout staff and learn more about the application process. RSVP for an upcoming information session.
Badge-Enabled Playlists and Pathways
In 2016, Sprout will be providing new catalytic support for cross-disciplinary, badge-enabled learning “playlists” and “pathways”. We’ll be looking for proposals from multiple organizations with shared audiences that seek to connect learning experiences across institutions and settings as well as single organizations that seek to connect learning experiences across disciplines. Sprout will be hosting a matchmaking event in February and a working session for applicant teams in March, and we’ll be helping prospective partners take advantage of the tech tools made available through the new LRNG platform. The deadline for proposals is Friday, April 8.
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. Deadlines are April 1 and October 7.
In support of Pittsburgh’s start-up community, The Sprout Fund is offering another round of this special funding stream to connect education technology enterprises to the Remake Learning Network, a professional network of educators and innovators in the greater Pittsburgh region. By supporting collaboration among ed-tech ventures and the educators and youth-serving agencies of the Remake Learning Network, the Ed-Tech Refinery draws more attention and resources to Pittsburgh’s emerging ed-tech industry and showcases Pittsburgh as hub for education innovation. The Ed-Tech Refinery will enable education resource partners to provide services at no cost to up to 2 ventures. The deadline for applications is Friday, March 4, 2016.
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. Remake Learning Sponsorship is available up to $5,000 and requests are accepted on a rolling basis.
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. Conference Stipends are available up to $1,500 and requests are accepted on a rolling basis.
Sprout Event Sponsorship
Sprout sponsors community events that push the boundaries of civic engagement and enhance the region’s cultural vitality. Although each sponsored effort is different, they all approach community issues and opportunities in new and non-traditional ways and empower Pittsburghers to take an active role in transforming their city. Sprout Sponsorship is available up to $1,000 and requests are accepted on a rolling basis.
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.
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 Grand Ideas application period for 2015 is closed. New submissions will be accepted in late 2016.
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 Neighbor-to-Neighbor micro grants, Community Grants, and Action Team Grants. Eligible projects are led by Northside residents and take place in the City of Pittsburgh’s 18 Northside neighborhoods. Application deadlines and opportunities to apply will be announced periodically.