2020 Pitch To Ditch Poverty

2020 Pitch to Ditch Poverty Challenge


Pitch to Ditch Poverty Application

Welcome to our second Pitch to Ditch Poverty contest.  This year we want the contest to lift up and highlight those big ideas that help mitigate the racial and social inequities that are so evident today, as well as those ideas that address the impact of the COVID-19 crisis in our communities.

Pitch to Ditch Poverty originated from the realization that our communities are full of groups and individuals with big ideas to address the challenges in their communities. This contest recognizes that groups and individuals impacted by our communities’ challenges also have the knowledge and lived experiences that best equip them to visualize and implement community-based solutions to those challenges. 

The Pitch to Ditch Poverty challenge provides funding, support, and recognition to individuals and community-led groups who have big ideas and projects that address the racial and social injustices that disproportionately impact individuals in poverty.

The committee will select up to three winners who will receive grant awards ranging from $2,000 to $5,000.

Your big ideas must be designed in collaboration with the people who will use and be impacted by the initiative. There’s no better way to understand the hopes and aspirations of those you are designing for than by involving them directly in bringing that initiative to life! In addition, your ideas must consider diversity, equity, and inclusion in the decision-making process to help remove disparities among groups for the best possible solutions.

Challenge goals are three-fold:

  1. Support innovative projects with promising potential for social impact.
  2. Foster a diverse pipeline of innovators through targeted outreach, support, and education.
  3. Promote/support social and racial justice at the grassroots level.

A. This proposal application must be completed and submitted by 5 pm on September 8, 2020. Proposal applications will only be accepted through this online form.

B. You will be notified by Sep 11, 2020, if you are selected to do a 7-minute presentation to our panel of judges.

C. Presentations to our panel of judges will take place beginning the week of September 21, 2020. 

D. Finalists will be selected by October 5th.

E. Finalists must submit a 5-7-minute video presentation by October 23, 2020.

F. Final presentations will be shown during our From Poverty to Possibilities event on November 10, 2020, and the winner(s) announced. 

Note: If you have questions about your submission, contact Pitch2Ditch@uwpc.org

Eligibility Criteria

Your big idea must address poverty, stagnant wages, financial instability, and foster racial and social justice in our communities. Concepts must be designed with people who are living in poverty that you want to impact. You must consider the following components:

  • Address the racial and social inequities in our communities.
  • Focus on the people who will use your product/innovation.
  • Help solve the fundamental problem, rather than the symptoms.
  • Be willing to test your design decisions with real people to create the best user-experience.
  • Only teams with at least three Pierce County residents as members are eligible to apply.

Eligible Groups

The following groups are encouraged to apply:

  • Student groups and classes (all ages)
  • Groups of individuals with lived experience (e.g. ex-offenders, homeless, youth, etc.)
  • Any informal group of neighbors and community-led groups
  • Grassroots leadership groups and cross-sector content expert groups
  • Advocacy and special interest groups
  • Faith-based communities
  • Non-profit organizations

Key Dates

  • Aug 28:  Final date to submit application
  • Aug 28-Sep 4:  Phase I – Submissions screened
  • Sep 11:  Those moving to Phase 2 notified
  • Sep 21-Oct 2nd:  Phase II – Seven-minute presentations to panel of judges
  • Oct 5:  Finalists selected
  • Oct 23:  Final date to submit seven-minute video
  • Nov 10:  Poverty to Possibilities Event
  • Winner(s) announced

2020 Pitch to Ditch Winners

2019 Pitch to Ditch Winners