The UNICEF Innovation Fundis looking to makeup to $100K equity-free investments (in USD and/or cryptocurrency) to provide early stage (seed) financing and mentoring to for-profit technology startups that have the potential to benefit humanity.
Applicants have the opportunity to receive a portion of funding in cryptocurrency (bitcoin or ether) through their recently launched CryptoFund. Given the current global climate and a dramatic shift to a digital world as a result of COVID-19, open-source solutions that address critical needs for society are as important as ever.
If you have a start-up registered in one of UNICEF’s programme countries and have a working, open-source blockchain prototype (or you are willing to make it open-source) showing promising results you can apply.
What is UNICEF looking for?
The CryptoFund site describes a few areas of interest but it’s important to note that it isn’t limited to those areas, so if you fall out of the areas of interest below you can still apply:
Financing enables individual people to participate in and contribute to various ecosystems. The solutions should;
- Enable people to use, earn, and hold cryptocurrencies;
- Allow people to access decentralised financial instruments;
- Explore new models to empower communities to act as their own economic hubs;
- Make financial systems more transparent.
Around the world, groups work together to deliver services. Increased transparency and accountability in these processes lead to better results. solutions should;
- Allow various group to work together in a transparent and accountable nature (i.e. supply-chain, contract management, data tracking, etc.)
- Enable decentralized deal-making, for example through decentralised marketplaces
UNICEF supports the creation of open-source software to ultimately enable communities with new tools. Solutions should;
- Explore new ways of making decisions (i.e. using a decentralized method such as DAOS to determine what projects should receive funding)
- Protect user data collected through solutions through zero knowledge proofs or other mechanisms.
Again, important to note is the fact that even if your blockchain solution doesn’t meet the above criteria it might still be accepted;
Our funding is not necessarily limited to the above. We are interested in companies that use distributed ledger tech in new, groundbreaking, ways that are scalable, and globally applicable.
If you are aligned with our general criteria, we want to hear from you.UNICEF
How to apply
- You must be registered as a private company in a UNICEF programme country;
- You are working on open source technology solutions or willing to be open-source under the following licenses or their equivalent: BSD, GNU, MIT (software), CERN, MIT, TAPR (hardware), or CC-BY (content);
- You have an existing prototype of the solution with promising results from initial pilots;
- Your solution has the potential to positively impact the lives of children.
Step 2) Read the full Request for Expressions of Interest document and FAQs
- Read the full Request for Expressions of Interest (REOI) document to understand the submission process and to learn more about the kinds of projects that qualify and how the scoring will be done;
- Read the FAQs;
- For any other questions, please submit through the form here.
Step 3) SUBMIT
- Submit your expression of interest by completing the form.
- All submissions must be made in English. If you wish to preview the questions to prepare your submission, view/download this PDF.
- To support your preparation, please note that the submission form also asks for a link to a 2-min pitch video. Detailed instructions can be found in the form.
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