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Congratulations to the 2023 Grant Winners of the Tech Idea Incubator Fund!

Congratulations to the 2023 Grant Winners of the Tech Idea Incubator Fund!

Tech Rising, an initiative led by the AvidXchange Foundation in partnership with 20+ local corporations, strives to bridge the digital divide and make Charlotte the most digitally inclusive community in the U.S.  through strategic engagement with the Center for Digital Equity, government, academic and nonprofit  partnerships.

In April, SHARE Charlotte hosted the 3rd annual Tech Rising Summit to bring together these parties for a day of collaboration, networking and learning. One of the key outputs of the summit is to establish a Tech Idea Incubator Fund which provides microgrants to seed innovative ideas from non profit organizations that are helping to eliminate the digital divide and foster digital inclusion and equity.  

Grants are $5K each and will be used to seed creative and innovative ideas that could eventually become larger initiatives. Funding corporate partners include: Equitable Foundation, Google Fiber, LendingTree, Lowe’s, Duke Energy, Honeywell and Ally Financial. 

The grants are given to the nonprofits for them to pilot their ideas this summer in the hope that they could become larger initiatives. In September, we will share the results of their work.

Here are our 2023 grantees:

1) Dottie Rose Foundation: is hosting a "SheCanCode: Summer of Cyber 2023" with Code Ninjas and Digi-Bridge.  This grant would be used to provide scholarships to 5 girls to attend their 3-week camp for free. The subjects will focus on powerful passwords, phishing & malware, Networks, hacking & cybercrime, and cryptocurrency.

2) Do Greater Charlotte:  is hosting Creative Quest Camp, an immersive five-day experience aimed at introducing 15 students to a diverse range of creative industries. This camp will serve as a crucial pilot program for our larger initiative, the launch of a creative after-school program. Building on the success and impact of Creative Quest Camp, their goal is to establish a sustainable and inclusive program that will provide ongoing creative education, access to creative technology, and mentorship to students.

3) Digi-Bridge: is creating a camp for middle school scholars from local Title-1 schools, focusing on the exciting realm of 3D design and printing. During the camp, scholars will have the opportunity to explore the world of orthopedic brace design and create a prototype for either the spine or wrist and hand. To facilitate this transformative experience, we have partnered with Mign, an esteemed orthopedic company specializing in 3D printing. This grant will provide opportunities to middle school scholars from Title-1 schools. 

4) Hack & Hustle Social Entrepreneurship Academy, Inc: This grant will allow them to purchase new STEM kits for 20 underserved youth ages 16-24  for our 5-week camp that focus on Python software coding, programming a Raspberry Pi/Arduino micro-controllers, solar energy, Artificial Intelligence / Machine Learning, computer architecture, and an introduction to electrical engineering. The new STEM kits will introduce our students to a new invention called Runlinc, which is an Artificial Intelligence (AI) / Internet of Things (IoT) device from South Australia.

5) First-Gen Success: This grant would allow them to purchase 20-30 stem kits and the development of a scholar-based website for their first-generation college-bound female students.  By providing opportunities for girls to explore STEM /Data Scientist fields through workshops, mentorship programs, and networking events, we hope to inspire and support young girls in pursuing their passions in science, technology, engineering, and math.

6) Blacks in Technology Charlotte:  They have partnered with the YWCA of Central Carolinas have partnered together to create a digital literacy course to help women with varying levels of computing experience with fundamental information on the basics of computing. They hope to help 50 women through this program and the grant would help them to hire instructors, and purchase software and other program materials.

7) Raise a Child of the Carolinas:  Through a partnership with Sugar Creek Charter School, they provide academic support and innovative enrichment exposure to 200 K-8th grade students. Through its Tech 2.0 initiative, Raise a Child would use this grant to purchase a suite of evidenced-based technology tools, Renaissance and Go, Guardian, that will improve academics and provide the necessary data to measure the program outcomes and efficiencies with students.



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