We’re Giving Away $1,000… Again!

How can we do more for the social issues and communities we care about?

Left with $16 at 39 – with a broken heart and broken business, you could say that the rug of life as I knew it (CEO, married…) was being pulled off from right under my feet. Yet this colossal collapse 12 years ago was probably the best thing that could have happened to me because I realised how little I need to live and give joyfully and meaningfully.

I started Hush, Singapore’s 1st silent teabar, as a social experiment in 2014 to bring silence and self care to the workplace through a tea reflection journey led completely by Deaf facilitators.

Why? Because I care about how the incessant use of technology is pushing us further and further away from ourselves, and from what truly matters. Because I care about empowerment for the differently-abled people in our society, whether the Deaf, the special needs children, elderly, the vulnerable.

This care, I have come to realise, is the fuel for innovation and action.

And I believe that many of us out there care deeply too about something in our community/ society and want to do something about it.

So last year, A Good Space wrote an article on the Internet, wanting to give away 5 x $1,000 (no strings attached) grants to 5 changemakers with a burning desire to start projects with a positive social impact.

And the country responded! We received 43 applications from people of all walks of life, with the youngest applicant being just 17 years old and the oldest being a pair of 77 year old grandfathers!

So this year, we want to do it again, to give away $1,000 for you to kickstart projects for the social issues and communities you care about… but with a special twist!

Read on to learn more!

What kind of projects are we looking for?

We are looking to support ordinary people who have a burning desire to bring about positive social change through innovative, ground up projects that expand perspectives and/or bring about greater social inclusion.

Most importantly, we’d LOVE to fund something that’s personally meaningful to you.

For example, here were some of the 43 ideas we received last year:

A board game creatively designed to explore the lifestyle of migrant workers employed in the construction industry.

A public awareness campaign to address the issue of sexual harassment on public transport, followed by a sharing of those findings through a theatre performance.

Project to rescue fresh produce from shopkeepers in Little India and deliver them to a soup kitchen serving low-income families.

Feel free to get creative, we’d love to hear your ideas! Your project doesn’t have to be groundbreaking in impact.

We’ll prioritise projects where:

1. The idea is innovative or benefits a group of people who might not receive these benefits previously

2. Funding isn’t readily available for this kind of project

3. You have an unusual insight into the project or your backstory is interesting

4. Can be implemented in the next 3 months

5. Applicant resides in Singapore

What is the special twist?

This year, we are working with the National Volunteer and Philanthropy Centre’s Company of Good team to bring in companies and their resources to help you do more good! (read below to learn more).

Image Credit: The Book Castle

How to apply?

Send in your application to Anthea and Vincent at: agoodspace@nvpc.org.sg with the subject: A Good Pitch 2019 — [Name of Your Project]

Please include:

1. What your project is

2. Who does your project serve?

3. How does your project help expand perspectives towards a social issue / promote social inclusion?

4. Why you’re doing it: We’re most interested in this part. Give us your story!

5. How can you involve companies to support you in your project? Are there specific resources you need that a company can provide? Try to be as innovative as you can!

6. An estimated project timeline: Broken down by month (or week, if it’s a shorter project)

7. A few links to anything that will make us feel like you’re a thoughtful and passionate person: Your online presence, social media, favorite YouTube video, or anything that can give us some context on who you are.

Put all of the above in a two-pager!

Please follow instructions! As a first-pass filter, if you don’t do all of the above (including using only the exact email address above), we will automatically archive your email.

What’s the application deadline?

9th December 2018 (2359hrs): Applications close. Please honor this deadline. If you send an application after this time, we will automatically delete it.

14th December 2018: Everyone will be notified by this date. Shortlisted applicants are invited to pitch to a panel of 5, including ourselves and board members of the National Volunteer and Philanthropy Centre (NVPC). Nothing formal, just a casual session to hear your story in person and how we can better support you!

4th January 2019: We’ll connect applicants shortlisted for the pitch to seasoned changemakers who care about similar social issues for them to share their resources and experience on the ground with you to guide you in your pitch.

2nd February 2019: We’ll have an exhibition to showcase all ideas (shortlisted or not) and invite volunteers, funders and companies who can support you projects further. The shortlisted applicants will also do their pitch on this day and we’ll announce the 5 winners on the spot!

We will post here again when everybody has been notified. Unfortunately, we cannot respond to individual inquiries about application status. Rest assured that we will go through and consider each application carefully.

Do I receive more support beyond $1,000?

Yes! $1,000 is meant to be a small amount to get you started. Beyond that, you’ll also get to tap into a like-minded community of changemakers at A Good Space and companies from Company of Good, to support you in your initiative to do more good, starting with the Exhibition on 2nd February 2019!

When we say “no strings attached”, what does that mean?

We’ll give you 50% up front and then check in with you before sending the second half. After the project, we’ll do a quick followup phone call or meetup over coffee to hear how it went and that’s it!

Can anybody apply?

Yes: any age, nationality, industry, job title, philosophy, or stage of life. Although we ask that you reside in Singapore (see prioritisation above).

How will you get the money?

We can send money either through bank transfer (you’ll need a bank account) or via check.

How many projects can you apply with?

As we are a small team of 2, we can only accept 1 proposal at this time so choose your best idea or the one you feel the most strongly about!

You have another question that’s not listed here.

Comment below and we’ll get to it!

Picture of Anthea Ong

Anthea Ong

Since 2009, Anthea has founded several community projects, including Project-Yoga-on-Wheels, Playground of Joy and Circle of Bliss.

She is the founder of Hush TeaBar (Singapore’s first silent teabar to bring silence and awareness to the workplace, facilitated by hearing-impaired employees) and also a Nominated Member of Parliament in Singapore.

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