Demo Day 2024 - Fast Forward

Demo Day 2024

The 11th annual Fast Forward Demo Day is here, and it’s bigger and bolder than ever.

 

This year, we’re showcasing a record-breaking cohort of 12 tech nonprofits. These leaders are tackling issues like poverty, healthcare inequity, and more. 92% have founders who have experienced the problems they’re solving. Now, they’re building cutting-edge tech to fight for a just world.

But that’s not all. The cohort boasts an unprecedented number of AI-powered nonprofits – more than half of the cohort is harnessing the power of AI to tackle the world’s biggest challenges.

Don’t miss this chance to witness the future of social impact unfold. Register below to join us at Virtual Demo Day on June 11 at 9am PT.


Meet the 2024 Startup Accelerator Cohort

 

 
    

 

The Opportunity: Widespread backlogs cripple India’s courts — it would take 300 years to clear today’s pileup of cases. A major bottleneck? Every word must be transcribed by stenographers.

The Solution: Adalat AI built an AI speech-to-text transcription software. Developed specifically for common law court rooms, the software understands the nuances of legal language and local dialects, ensuring nothing gets lost in transcription.

The Founder: Utkarsh Saxena is a former law clerk and attorney at India’s Supreme Court. He witnessed the court system’s inefficiencies firsthand, both through his daily legal work and his family’s case. These experiences ignited his passion for using tech to increase access to justice.

adalat.ai | founders@adalat.ai | LinkedIn


The Opportunity: Only 20% of computer science grads are Black and Latinx. Facing a lack of mentors, network, and resources, Black and Latinx CS students often switch majors and pursue other careers.

The Solution: ColorStack launched an online, peer-to-peer network for Black and Latinx CS students. The community quickly grew to over 10,000. To meet the moment, ColorStack launched a community engagement product to deliver community building, academic support, and career development opportunities at scale.

The Founder: Jehron Petty, a Cornell CS grad, watched as some of his brightest peers dropped the major. This led him to dedicate countless hours to peer mentorship. He found that all students needed was a support system to persist. So he made one.

colorstack.org | founders@colorstack.org | LinkedIn


The Opportunity: In India, farmers and forests are caught in a vicious cycle. Climate change affects farmers’ yields and reduces their incomes. Farmers are also often forced to clear more forestland in search of fertile soil for agriculture, worsening climate change.

The Solution: Farmers for Forests tackles both issues by paying smallholder farmers to replant native trees and shrubs. They use an open-source AI tool to measure tree growth, providing deep data on the survival, health, and carbon sequestration capacity of every tree. 

The Founders: Arti Dhar and Krutika Ravishankar spent their careers working on agriculture and poverty-reduction projects on the ground in Africa and South Asia. Witnessing the devastating impacts of climate change on already vulnerable communities inspired them to launch.

farmersforforests.org | founders@farmersforforests.org | LinkedIn


The Opportunity: Millions of formerly incarcerated U.S. citizens could vote but often don’t, deterred by confusing laws about court fees that obscure their eligibility. Why risk it? A mistaken vote can lead to a new felony charge and reincarceration.

The Solution: Free Our Vote combines web crawlers and AI to organize disparate data and determine voter eligibility. Their system efficiently processes complex data, helping disenfranchised voters understand their standing, reclaim their rights, and vote.

The Founders: Neel Sukhatme is an economist, computer engineer, and the Associate Dean at Georgetown Law. He and Ph.D. economist Alexander Billy launched Free Our Vote to uplift disenfranchised voters through innovative, data-driven solutions.

freeourvote.com | founders@freeourvote.com | LinkedIn


The Opportunity: Accessing accurate, personalized abortion information is difficult and time-consuming. Misinformation and fragmented, out-of-date data create barriers to essential healthcare.

The Solution: ineedana.com simplifies the search for abortion services, featuring real stories and providing clear, personalized guidance. It uses non-identifiable data to guide users through information on clinics, legal restrictions, and financial aid. The platform updates daily, making it a reliable and empowering resource.

The Founders: Rebecca and Daniel Nall co-founded ineedana.com after they couldn’t find reliable abortion info when they needed it. Their expertise in product design and software engineering at Netflix and Zillow inspired them to develop the platform they wished they’d had.

ineedana.com | founders@ineedana.com | LinkedIn


The Opportunity: In Canada, the closure of hundreds of media outlets and a decline in democratic coverage has left citizens without transparency on their politicians and government. No comprehensive tool exists for citizens to easily access vital information. Until now.

The Solution: Investigative Journalism Foundation scans sites and databases across Canada to provide insights into political donations, lobbying, and government spending. This information enables citizens, journalists, and policymakers to hold power accountable.

The Founder: Award-winning investigative reporter Zane Schwartz created Canada’s first comprehensive databases on political and financial transparency. COO Carmen Reilly brings rich experience in team building and product management from her tenure at Qlik.

theijf.org | founders@theijf.org | LinkedIn


The Opportunity: Around 1.5 million immigrants could be eligible for citizenship but currently lack legal status. A complex, unjust, and costly immigration legal system obstructs their access to their rights.

The Solution: Justicia Lab builds digital legal tools to support immigrants. Their latest initiative, ImmPath AI, is a multilingual immigration assistant for asylum seekers. Using behavioral science, plain-language legal content, and AI, the tool helps immigrants explore options for securing immigration status and offers actionable steps.

The Founder: Economist and advocate Rodrigo Camarena has spent decades supporting immigrant communities. His extensive experience in grassroots organizing, government, and civic tech has shaped Justicia Lab’s mission to transform immigrant legal advocacy.

justicialab.org | founders@justicialab.org | LinkedIn


The Opportunity: Schools are often the first line of support for the youth mental health crisis. Yet, 9 in 10 teachers feel unequipped to address student mental health.

The Solution: Lenny is an AI-powered behavioral health specialist for every school. The platform helps schools assess student needs and create custom lessons and interventions based on clinically-informed content and cutting-edge brain health research.

The Founders: Bryce Bjork and Ting Gao, Yale-educated engineers, connected through their shared experiences with siblings with mental illness. Recognizing the power of early intervention, they created a digital tool to help every school and educator address behavioral health challenges.

lennylearning.org | founders@lennylearning.org | LinkedIn


The Opportunity: Limited access to modern education, disengagement, and lack of job skills leave thousands of young people underpaid or unemployed worldwide. Schools and companies want the same thing: for young people to learn 21st century skills.

The Solution: O-Lab delivers gamified learning that educates students across subjects. Partnering with companies, O-Lab creates educational computer games that teach real-world job skills. The platform is accessible, multilingual, and can work offline. 

The Founder: Tania Rosas grew up in Colombia’s indigenous capital, witnessing firsthand the educational disparities that stifle opportunities. Her edtech solutions have earned her recognition from the likes of the United Nations, MIT, and The Obama Foundation.

o-lab.app/en/eng/ | founders@o-lab.app | LinkedIn


The Opportunity: Low-income communities of color are twice as likely to experience mood disorders during the birth journey. One-size-fits-all systems, stigma, and a lack of therapists, specifically those who share lived experiences, prevent effective mental wellness access.

The Solution: Our Roots provides support for perinatal, low-income birthing parents of color. The tech platform facilitates 1:1 sessions with coaches who share lived experiences, and offers community and resources. With no waitlists, essential support is readily available.

The Founder: Priya Iyer, a maternal and child health epidemiologist and mother of two, faced significant perinatal mental health challenges. Her personal struggle and subsequent healing journey inspired her to become a peer coach and found Our Roots.

ourroots.community | founders@ourroots.community | LinkedIn


The Opportunity: Educators have historically relied on others to build tools for them. Thanks to the power of AI, they can easily build tools that are tailored to their contexts and needs.

The Solution: Playlab enables educators to create, remix, and share their own AI edtech tools. From New York City to Uganda, educators use Playlab to personalize learning, improve student outcomes, and reinvigorate their teaching.

The Founders: Ian Serlin is a serial entrepreneur. His last startup was funded by Google’s AI fund and acquired in 2022. Yusuf Ahmad is an education innovator who has contributed to Scratch, led product for Teach For America, and was on the founding team of a pan-African university network.

playlab.ai | founders@playlab.ai | LinkedIn


The Opportunity: Due to a lack of holistic support, first-gen students are often without emotional support and crucial guidance to navigate the college admissions process. But access to the right support can give more students greater academic and economic opportunities.

The Solution: Uprooted Academy connects over 10,000 students with mentors and resources, empowering them to become confident applicants and excel at their dream colleges. Its approach to post-secondary planning is holistic, weaving wellness into every step.

The Founder: Tiffany Green, a licensed therapist and first-gen college grad, launched UA after overcoming her own admission challenges. Using her psychological expertise and research, Tiffany created a platform that prepares students of color for success.

uprootedacademy.org | founders@uprootedacademy.org | LinkedIn

 

 


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