The Tamer Center for Social Enterprise: Tamer Fund for Social Ventures

The Tamer Fund for Social Ventures (“the Fund”) provides seed grants to nonprofit, for-profit, or hybrid early-stage Columbia University affiliated social and environmental ventures. Preference will be given to start-up ventures that have the potential to be financially self-sustaining in the longer term.

July 23, 2017

The Tamer Fund for Social Ventures (“the Fund”) provides seed grants to nonprofit, for-profit, or hybrid early-stage Columbia University affiliated social and environmental ventures. Preference will be given to start-up ventures that have the potential to be financially self-sustaining in the longer term.

For questions, please reach out to tamersvfund@gmail.com.

CRITERIA FOR SELECTION

The Tamer Fund for Social Ventures provides seed grants of up to $25,000 to nonprofit, for-profit, and hybrid early-stage social and environmental ventures. Funding will be made available to around seven ventures each year.

Ventures must be led by Columbia University students, alumni, faculty or researchers, or be advised and have significant involvement by Columbia University faculty or researchers. There is no time limit after graduation for alumni to apply. The entire team need not be Columbia University affiliated; one founding member or significantly involved faculty or research advisor is sufficient.

To be eligible for the Tamer Fund for Social Ventures, ventures must not have closed their seed funding round at the time of application. Preference will be given to ventures that have the potential to be financially self-sustaining in the longer term. This preference includes nonprofits that can be sustained by generating revenues via fee-for-service models, for example.

Typically, ventures can only apply once for funding from the Tamer Fund for Social Ventures. We encourage you to apply when your application can clearly address the following questions:

  1. What is the intended social impact of the venture? How socially innovative is it? What is the potential to scale the venture? What metrics will be used to measure its success?
  2. What is the business model and how likely is it to succeed? (e.g.: Business Model Canvas is a potential framework that can be used by applicants); and
  3. Has the venture already attracted needed resources, including a quality management team, advisors, customer/client or stakeholder connections, and other sources of funding?

Read more about the process for selection for the Tamer Fund for Social Ventures.