The Problem

In the U.S., 43% of households cannot fully afford a monthly budget of basic human services including food, housing, healthcare, transportation, and childcare, which requires families to make costly decisions and trade-offs. This perpetuates the fact that more than half of Americans have little or no savings at all and are not able to save or invest in their future, let alone withstand financial shock.

How might we increase financial resilience and economic mobility for all to succeed in the innovation economy?

The Solution

The Fall 2018 Civic Accelerator – a 10-week entrepreneur boot camp and investment fund – will accelerate innovative, scalable ventures that improve financial outcomes, spur economic mobility and prepare families for financial success in the 21st century economy through:

Inclusive Financial Health

Financial education, Affordable digital tools and internet access, Financial counseling, Access to social networks, Soft skill development

Financial Resilience Pathways

Budgeting tools & training, Savings products & incentives, Debt reduction methods, Affordable access to credit, Pathways to asset building & home ownership

Opportunity through Innovation

Work-ready skill development, Access to “gig economy” jobs, Employer savings/support products, Portable/co-op benefits and services, Talent matching platforms

Cohort 12 – VENTURES

CapWay (Austin, Texas)

CapWay provides opportunity and access to financial content and services for unbanked, underbanked and working poor millennials.

DACA Time (Columbus, OH)

DACA Time helps make immigration paperwork easier, cheaper, and more accurate.

FreeFrom (Los Angeles)

FreeFrom creates pathways to financial security and long-term safety for survivors of gender-based violence.

FundingU (Atlanta)

FundingU proffers college completion loans to academically successful students who can’t access “last gap” bank loans due to low credit scores or lack of a co-signer.

Girls Going Global (Atlanta)

Girls Going Global empowers underserved girls, ages 13-17, by providing the tools, mentorship and educational experiences to be global citizens.

Holberg Financial (Chicago)

Holberg Financial helps employees reach their financial goals and reduce financial stress through health benefits companies offer to their employees.

Hopeworks (Camden, NJ)

Hopeworks creates technology solutions for businesses that provide opportunities and pathways to success for youth.

Jenny Life, Inc. (Seattle)

Jenny Life protects the more than 28 million moms currently without mortality protection, as a women-focused life insurance provider.

Medean (Chicago)

Medean provides guidance and incentives for millennials to improve their financial well-being through a budgeting app using gamification and peer comparison.

Next Step Network (Louisville, KY)

Next Step is changing the market system of how manufactured homes are built, sold and financed, while preparing and supporting homebuyers.

Piecewise (New York)

Piecewise helps student loan borrowers pay down their debt based on data generated by financial behavior.

Solve (Chicago)

Solve makes it easier for community-based organizations to connect individuals to jobs and social services.

Tassel Turn (Chicago)

TasselTurn matches youth in foster care to personalized, evidence-informed, education coaching over the web to help them achieve economic independence.

Key Fall 2018 Dates

October 7 – First Look, Atlanta

The Civic Accelerator First Look is a (friendly) Shark Talk-style event. Our ventures will share how they are accelerating financial resilience and economic mobility for all to succeed in the innovation economy, while you – the audience – challenge each team to think bigger and better. Join us for networking, food and drinks following the program.

November 14 – Investor Café, Chicago

The Investor Café is a unique opportunity for investors, funders and potential customers to meet with promising entrepreneurs and share insights and feedback around their informal pitch through structured, coffee-shop style conversations in a fast-paced, round table setting.

This is a non-solicitation event with shared learning and relationship building as the core objective.

December 19 – Executive Pitch, Philadelphia

The Civic Accelerator Executive Pitch is a unique twist on the typical “Demo Day”. It is an opportunity for select business, philanthropic and impact investment leaders to share insights and feedback with the graduating ventures in the Civic Accelerator around their business presentations in an interactive, intimate mock-boardroom setting.

Partners and Supporters

About Points of Light

Points of Light is the world’s largest organization dedicated to volunteer service. The Civic Accelerator serves as a catalyst for innovation by supporting, investing and helping to grow the impact of social entrepreneurs and their ventures.