Big, Bold Ideas for a Better Future
The Catalyst Fund makes grants between $2,500–$15,000 to anyone, anywhere in the world who has an early-stage idea or project that addresses pressing global challenges.
The Catalyst Fund is geared towards small and/or early-stage ideas and projects that need a capital infusion to launch or prove viability. Catalyst awardees are typically piloting a program, venturing into new territory, on the cusp of launching, or pivoting in a new direction.
The Catalyst Fund supports big ideas or projects that depart from the status quo and require us to look at a problem and its solution in a new light. These big ideas have a high potential for impact across an entire community, city, or country. They tend to leverage existing infrastructure, build on partnerships (public and private), and improve on what’s already out there. Big ideas push boundaries and challenge convention.
The Catalyst Fund supports individuals whose vision for change is audacious. Catalyst awardees seek significant, long-term impact and have a vision for how to get there and what needs to get done. They are able to articulate how they plan to make the world better and why. Their vision inspires others and offers a glimpse of a better future.
They know you are applying with an early-stage idea. However, they’re looking for a well-thought-out plan with clear goals, specific metrics, and measurable impact. They’re also looking for:
Innovative: Approaches or strategies that innovate on existing models — What are you building on? What other solutions already exist?
Community-based: You have a deep understanding of the communities you work on behalf of — What are their needs? How are they engaged in the process? How will they be able to maintain the solution over time?
High potential for impact: A recognized issue that affects a significant percentage of people — this is relative, but we’re looking for solutions to problems that have outsized impact.
Sustainable: Experienced team and a smart strategy for driving change — Who and what are driving the change? Why is this the right team? What makes this the right strategic bet right now?
The selection process also takes into consideration the following criteria: innovation, potential impact, eco-system, and originality.
What are the deadlines for funding?
There are no deadlines. Applications are accepted year-round.