Housed under the Terry College of Business Entrepreneurship Program, the University of Georgia Kickstarter Fund is a student-managed initiative that provides privately-funded capital grants to UGA students and faculty to support the launch or growth of a venture. Its mission is to promote interconnectivity amongst the University of Georgia and the greater Athens community, to provide unique and stimulating educational experiences to the members of the fund and help promote Athens and the University of Georgia as entrepreneurial hubs on a regional and national scale.
In December 2019, the winner of $5,000 seed funding through this initiative was IVolunteer International, a 501(c)3 tech-nonprofit registered in Georgia. Their vision is creating 7 billion volunteers. IVolunteer International is developing a location-based mobile application that users can utilize to easily connect to volunteer projects in their local community in real-time. The mobile app, planned to be introduced in three updates, will include a real-time social impact tracker, allowing users to calculate their social impact and organize volunteer projects themselves. For the past two years, this start-up nonprofit organization has connected over 6,000 volunteers to over 200 projects worldwide.
The seed funding will support the development of the mobile application which will be launched in late Summer 2020.
IVolunteer International, a completely youth-led initiative, was founded by Nipuna Ambanpola while pursuing his undergraduate degree at Georgia Southern University. Nipuna is currently pursuing a Masters of Public Administration in the School of Public & International Affairs at the University of Georgia. He is a graduate assistant at the J.W. Fanning Institute for Leadership Development under the Public Service and Outreach division of UGA.
“The Kickstarter Fund is a great initiative as it empowers entrepreneurial spirit in all of us. As a start-up nonprofit, the seed funding we have received to develop our mobile app will have a multiplicative effect in the communities we serve. We are excited to bring our mobile app to the State of Georgia in late Summer 2020 and empower volunteers to create and track impact in real-time” said Nipuna Ambanpola.
The mobile app will focus on the individual volunteer, providing them opportunities to connect and create volunteer opportunities. It will also allow the user’s to track their contributions to the Sustainable Development Goals overtime. The mobile app is designed and developed in partnership with East Taylor Creatives, a software company based in Savannah, Georgia.
About IVolunteer International
IVolunteer International is a 501(c)3 tech-nonprofit organization registered in Savannah, Georgia. It is a Platinum Seal nonprofit organization on Guidestar and a Top Rated Nonprofit on Greatnonprofits. It is a technology nonprofit organization, with membership in FastForward. In 2019 and 2020, IVolunteer International was selected as finalists for the “Peace Through Trade Competition” by World Trade Center Savannah. In 2020, IVolunteer International earned the Civil Society Association with the United Nations Department of Global Communications, in their efforts to enhance and contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals.