Fast Forward Accelerator for Tech Nonprofits Continues to Thrive
Earlier this month I had the pleasure of meeting the incredible teams participating in this summer’s Fast Forward Accelerator for tech nonprofits. Cofounded in 2014 by Shannon Farley and Kevin Barenblat, Fast Forward is an accelerator designed exclusively for nonprofits using technology to improve the world.
This year Fast Forward received three times the number of applications than in its first year, showing a deepening commitment to designing technology applied to a breadth of social justice, educational, and environmental causes.
All of the accelerator participants use technologies to solve issues like education, health, and human rights, and are organized as nonprofit corporations. Like other Section 501(c)(3) nonprofits, they must address issues relating to fundraising, financial sustainability, board governance, risk management, security and privacy, unrelated business income, political activities, international operations, and others.
This 2016 accelerator cohort includes:
- CommonLit: equips educators with high-quality, standards-aligned digital literacy tools
- Democracy Earth Foundation: incorruptible digital voting technology
- Hack Club: platform for high schoolers to start awesome after-school coding clubs
- Intelehealth: open-source mobile telemedicine platform for last mile health care delivery
- JustFix.nyc: arming tenants in neglectful housing situations with tech for legal empowerment
- Learn Fresh: education game developer integrating professional sports to teach math
- Open Media Project: live and on-demand searchable media software for governments
- Think of Us: tech that improves the lives of foster youth and systems they are connected to
- We The Protesters: digital tools for activism to end police violence and systemic racism in the US
I look forward to seeing their growth, successes, and challenges over the coming months and years.