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United Way of Tarrant County

Where New Ideas Are Planted, Solutions Grow

KERNEL Proposal Instructions

Submission: Please submit five hard copies and one electronic copy of your proposal to United Way of Tarrant County no later than Friday, July 7, 2017 at 5:00 pm. Incomplete proposals will not be accepted. No proposals will be received after 5:00 pm on Friday, July 7. United Way is located at 1500 N Main St. Suite 200, Fort Worth, TX 76164. Electronic copy should be emailed to



1. Cover Page (1 page maximum) Use Appendix A: Cover Page Template to complete all project details and provide a brief Executive Summary. This should include a brief overview of the most important aspects of your social innovation and provide a strong sense of your business model. Limit executive summary to the remaining half page, approximately 225 words.

Questions the proposal evaluators and judges should be able to answer:

  • What social problem so you plan to solve?
  • What is your innovative approach to solving the problem? In what way is it creative and unique?
  • What long-term goals have you set?
  • Who are your target customers and target beneficiaries?


2. Proposal Narrative The proposal should address the following questions in sections A – D in no more than 6 pages. Restate the bold section heading.


Section A: Organizational Overview  Explain the organization briefly. Including what type of business you operate, what you do, and who your consumers are.

Questions the proposal evaluators and judges should be able to answer:

  • Basic background information including mission statement, form of organization: non-profit, for-profit, partnership, corporation, etc.
  • Who are your target customers or beneficiaries?
  • Are there milestones and a strategy for growth?
  • Why does your company/idea have high growth potential?
  • What are your plans for your program/service if you are not awarded the KERNEL funds?


Section B: Product/Service Describe the product/ service and its innovative qualities and benefits. This project is meant to address needs in Tarrant County that address our three impact areas: Education, Income and Health.

Questions the proposal evaluators and judges should be able to answer:

  • What social problem do you plan to solve?
  • What need exists in Tarrant County and what local data or evidence supports the claim that this need exists?
  • What product/service you are proposing? How does the product/service satisfy the needs of your target customer?
  • What makes your product/service different or unique? Identify and summarize any innovative aspects of your proposal.
  • Is your novel solution more effective, efficient, sustainable, or just than current solutions for the problem you are addressing?
  • Where are you currently in terms of product/service development? What steps still need to be taken?
  • What quantity of the product/service will be produced in the 12 month funding period?
  • If this is a service – does evidence exist that it has been used successfully by your organization or other entities? Provide data if applicable.


Section C: Marketing/Outreach Describe the customer segments, market trends and competitors and how you plan to reach your target customer.

Questions the proposal evaluators and judges should be able to answer:

  • Who are your current (and possible future) competitors? How are you positioned in comparison to your competitors?
  • Who are your partners and/or what partnerships would need to be developed within the next year to make this project successful?
  • What market and environmental factors will challenge your ability to meet objectives? How will they be overcome?
  • What steps will you take to reach and engage your target customer?
  • What is the organization’s social media strategy?
  • What factors allow you to be successful in distribution of this product/service?


Section D: Operations Plan Describe operations of your service/product including personnel, resources needed, and sustainability plan. If applicable, include an organizational chart as Appendix IV.

Questions the proposal evaluators and judges should be able to answer:

  • How is your business organized or how do you plan to organize it? Explain briefly and include an organizational chart as an appendix.
  • Is your social innovation within government; the for-profit sector, the nonprofit sector (also known as the third sector), or a cross-sector collaboration?
  • Are there an outlined business processes to reach the projected milestones from Section A.?
  • What key activities in your operations drive value to your target customers?
  • What key resources are needed to produce product or service?
  • How many employees do you have? How do you plan to scale the team in the next 12 months?
  • What are the roles and background of key personnel?
  • What opportunities and risks do you face? What long-term goals have you set?
  • Who are your current investors/shareholders/creditors, if any?
  • How much funding do you need and over what time period? This total should include funding needed from other sources, not just funding requested from UWTC.
  • Based on your projected revenue streams, when do you forecast breaking even on the financials?
  • Provide an explanatory overview of pricing decisions that have been made for your product/service. If cost per unit is different than the cost covered by the client, include both numbers.
  • What are your plans for sustaining this project?



3. Attachments:

I. Work plan  (2 page maximum) Outline clearly and comprehensively the tasks, activities, and outcomes over the next year that will demonstrate successful implementation of your proposal. Use Appendix B: KERNEL Work Plan Template to clearly explain dates for activities and expected quantitative and qualitative results to reach project goal(s).


II. Project Budget and Finances  (2 pages maximum) Provide a detailed project budget (specifically showing how the United Way-requested amount will be used in this project). Use Appendix C: KERNEL Project Budget Form.

III. Non-profit: Attach Board of Directors list. Business: Attach business principals/partner list.

IV. Organization Chart: A visual representation of your staff and reporting structure.


V. Video: (5 points) One minute highlight video of you presenting your proposal must uploaded to by using login email: and password: kernellive. Video must be 1080 p or HD resolution in the horizontal orientation.