Congratulations to the MCON14 Be Fearless Pitch It finalists! New this year at the Millennial engagement conference, MCON14, the Case Foundation will host the first ever Be Fearless Pitch It challenge exclusively for Millennial social entrepreneurs. Up for grabs is $2,000, which the winner can use to help turn their idea into a reality. Both in-person attendees as well as live stream viewers will be able to watch all three pitches and vote to help determine the winner. Be sure to cast your vote on June 19 at 10:50 AM CT by tuning into the livestream at www.themillennialimpact.com.
Here’s a special sneak peak about each of the final three organizations—Ecoviate, Give Mob and Scholarships Expanding Education—and how their big ideas embody the Be Fearless principles.
What goals are you working towards at your organization? How would the grand prize from the Challenge help you achieve that goal?
Ecoviate – Our ultimate goal is to eradicate global warming. Sounds crazy, right? We currently have two technologies, the EcoTube and Greenshields, that reduce emissions from transportation and the industrial sector. We are working towards launching our products after an initial pilot phase. So far, we have bootstrapped and hacked our way into prototypes, testing, and a pilot program. The MCON funds will help us remain fearless with our approach and give us the capital to further perfect our design and go-to-market strategy. We are doing this because we want to show the kids of the world that even teenagers can do impactful things in their own lives with limited resources.
Give Mob – At GiveMob we strive to inspire small acts of kindness that anyone, regardless of age, can participate in. We hope to make charitable giving as easy, accessible, and intuitive as possible on mobile. Our goal is to become the primary way individuals discover, explore, and give to nonprofit and charitable causes while on their mobile devices.
Scholarships Expanding Education – When we initially developed the SEE concept, our outlook centered around scaling the platform quickly. It became clear, however, that long-term, sustainable growth will result from exceptional SEE scholarship organizer experiences. Our goal is to have each SEE user come away from their SEE experience saying, “Wow…that was cool. I did something there”. We want to craft philanthropic experiences that are meaningful and personal. We’re willing to trade slower growth, in the short term, for the awesome stories that will emerge from investing in the experience of each user.
What fearless approaches have you implemented in your life/organization?
Ecoviate – We strongly believe that age is not a determining factor to success. The Ecoviate team consists of some of the brightest young minds in the country. We know that our age is not a limiting factor. The beauty of being young is that it gives you room to take risk and be bold with your pursuits. Using our fearless story, we want to show other kids around the world that they too have the ability to build the future that they want to see.
Give Mob – If we were to win the MCON funds, we would put it towards development of Version 2 of our iPhone and Android app. In the past few months, we’ve learned an immense amount about how people are using and interacting with our app, and we know exactly what we need to improve on. We also have a few new features, including location-based giving and offline interactions, that we are exploring.
Scholarships Expanding Education – We came up with the SEE scholarship creation concept in early 2013. We had what we thought was a great idea, a platform where anyone can create a named scholarship in honor of a loved one, but we had no computer programming experience and no money. During that final semester at Wesleyan I decided to teach myself enough computer programming to build a simple prototype that we could use to explain the concept. I would go to forums, copy and paste snippets of code, and pretty much just see what happened. After five months of this, I managed to cobble together a platform that actually worked. The thing was a mess, but it worked. We built up enough courage to launch it at giveandsee.org as a beta-version of our platform and over the past six months, we’ve helped create 20 scholarships that have raised over $15,000. Putting the platform out there was a bit scary, but the experience has been incredible.
Do you have a question to ask these millennial entrepreneurs? Leave a comment or tweet us at @CaseFoundation with the hashtag #MCON14.
Ecoviate creates sustainable technologies and empowers others to do the exact same. To see their incredible work, visit www.ecoviate.com
GiveMob was developed with the idea that mobile giving can and should be as seamless and accessible as possible. GiveMob is a charitable giving app for iPhone and Android that allows users to donate a small sum of money ($5-$10) to featured charities through SMS. Visit www.givemobapp.org to learn more.
Scholarships Expanding Education (SEE)
Scholarships Expanding Education (SEE) provides the necessary tools and logistical support for anyone to create, and fundraise for, a named scholarship in honor of a loved one. Anyone can create a SEE scholarship at giveandsee.org.