November 14, 2018
 
Two Mass. Nonprofits Get $100K to Create Cape Cod Partnership

October 25, 2018 — Two Massachusetts nonprofits—Entrepreneurship for All and Cape Cod Young Professional— this week were awarded a $100,000 grant from the state to establish a partnership to foster entrepreneurship on Cape Cod.

Over the next year, the grant will fund the launch of a new accelerator for the Cape region, a multi-week program designed to nurture the development of new businesses and pitch events aimed at providing seed funding to founders with ideas for new businesses or social impact organizations.

Specifically, Entrepreneurship for All (EforAll), based in Lowell, which supports entrepreneurship through mentorship and other activities, and recently expanded to Cape Cod, and Cape Cod Young Professionals (CCYP), based in West Yarmouth, which supports advancement of the Cape's emerging workforce and community leaders, will recruit and develop a network of local volunteer mentors who can help startups grow into sustainable businesses.

In announcing the grant, Gov. Charlie Baker noted that investments in digital health, collaborative workspaces, workforce development, and technical assistance and expansion, will help provide opportunities for Massachusetts entrepreneurs and small business owners.

The new grant is from the Entrepreneurship Mentoring Grant program of the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative (MassTech), an effort that aims to develop strong ecosystems for entrepreneurs across the state.

“CCYP is thrilled to partner with EforAll to leverage the networks of both organizations and maximum impact for entrepreneurs on Cape Cod,” said Lauren Barker, CEO of CCYP. “As an organization that works to cultivate opportunities for the Cape’s young workers and leaders, this partnership signifies a major step forward in creating the sort of business ecosystem that attracts and keeps the best and brightest minds in our region."

Added Christin Marshall, Executive Director of EforAll Cape Cod: “We launched EforAll Cape Cod on July 2, 2018 and have seen early and significant success due to a combination of support from existing partner organizations like CCYP, as well as high demand for services from aspiring entrepreneurs."

Started in Lowell in 2010 as the Merrimack Valley Sandbox, EforAll supports entrepreneurship as a means to achieving economic and social impact in communities outside of Greater Boston. EforAll has received support from MassTech and the state dating back to an initial $150,000 award in 2014 to pilot mentoring programs in Lowell and Lawrence. The success of that initial award led to an expansion of EforAll’s programs to the South Coast region around Fall River and New Bedford, a three-year effort funded by an award of $1 million in 2015.

Each year of the grant, EforAll’s South Coast program has engaged over 1,000 community members, assisted 150-plus businesses, and graduated 30-plus entrepreneurs from its accelerator program, building an extensive network of program alumni in the process.

This is the second award from MassTech to CCYP, following a $50,000 grant for the organization’s Career Connect Mentor Exchange program in 2014. Founded in 2005, CCYP brings together its 1,000 members to engage on issues critical to the Cape Cod economy and to small businesses, including economic vibrancy. It hosts the Shape Your Cape Summit, an annual forum that brought together over 250 attendees in 2018 to discuss ways to build a dynamic economy, how professionals can engage in local government, and issues around housing.

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