Is this for real?
How does it work?
Submissions through our application form are placed in a common pool viewable by chapters around the world. Each chapter generally meets monthly to select a project to fund. By consensus, “trustees” determine which project to fund, and the $1000 award is distributed accordingly. Some chapters also contact applicants or conduct “pitch nights” before awarding the award.
Chapters are organized by geography, and more recently by topic of interest. While specifying a chapter to apply to is not necessary (all chapters can view the applications received by all other chapters), many chapters show a preference for local projects.
Is this a loan/investment?
No, it is an award with no strings attached. We do not claim any ownership or future claims on your project, nor do we wish for the funds to be repaid.
Great! Who can apply?
Anyone. There are no prerequisites to apply (beyond, of course, being awesome).
How do I apply?
You can apply online here. The application is straightforward, and can be completed in 15 minutes or less. Because of the volume of applications, we cannot personally respond to each application individually.
What have you funded in the past?
We’ve funded a number of projects since the Foundation was, er, founded. Projects range across a wide spectrum, from public artwork to mobile applications to scientific experiments. You learn more about the “fellows” and their projects from our blog posts.
Is there anything you don’t typically fund?
While the Awesome Foundation keeps an open mind about projects, we’ve found that there’s generally a few types of submissions that chapters have been less willing to fund. However, these are just guidelines–if you think we’d be interested in your awesome project even if it flirts with one of these types, there’s no harm in submitting anyway!
Purchases for personal use: We think you’re really awesome, but we’re probably not going to just give you $1000 for a car/vacation/rent payment/pony… unless it’s the crucial component of a bigger project that also benefits others!
Maintenance fees for established charities and foundations: While we may support the goals of your established organization, we’re primarily interested in funding projects or new ventures and not the continuation of an existing organization. If your organization/foundation/charity still wants to apply, think of a specific, creative $1000 project that our money could go directly toward!
Vague causes and applications: The more specific you are in your application about what you’ll use the money for and why, the more likely we are to fund it!
Okay, so, what’s awesome?
Awesome projects are not strictly defined, but tend to challenge and expand our understanding of our individual and communal potentials. They bring communities together, casting aside social inhibitions and boundaries for a moment. They spark an instant of joy and delight and inspire a long-term hope for a more awesome future.
Pretty specific, huh?