UpDayton launches project incubator

Are you a social entrepreneur with an idea for your community?

Snag your spot in UpDayton’s new Project Incubator.

For a decade, UpDayton has been supporting community projects pitched by volunteers and voted on by attendees at its annual summit.

This year, the organization is launching a formal training program for the community leaders who want to tap into its platform.

The UpDayton Project Incubator is a 9-month program designed for young leaders to transform community project ideas into action. It includes a pitch at the annual UpDayton Summit, which will now take place fall of 2019 rather than the usual spring timeframe.

Individuals or teams accepted into the incubator will be part of a cohort-like environment, building relationships with like-minded changemakers. Attendees will participate in a series of workshops to help define their project, create their plan, and tell their story to maximize volunteer power and resources.

The new program was introduced by new UpDayton Director Lauren White.

“I want to set people up for success,” Lauren said. “In the past, projects that don’t win at the summit don’t always continue. This incubator will provide the opportunity for even more individuals to receive valuable leadership development.”

By participating in the incubator, leaders of all projects will be enabled to move forward, even if they don’t receive UpDayton funding at the summit.

Ideally, the young community leaders involved in the incubator would continue to have a rapport once the program finished, leading to a very connected next generation of leaders of companies and organizations in Dayton, she added.

Topics participants will dive into throughout the incubator program will include idea validation, target audience identification, storytelling, marketing, mental game, budgeting, task and volunteer management, how to run an effective meeting, project wrap-up procedures, and succession planning — is there a community organization that can help sustain the project, or is the goal to have a well-run one-off program?

Check out the project and applicant criteria, and apply for your spot in the first incubator here. The application deadline is March 1.

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