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September Pitch at Toronto Mini Maker Faire!

20 Sep

Tomorrow, Saturday September 21st, at 4pm, we’ll be having our September Pitch Night event, at the Toronto Mini Maker Faire! Our shortlist is:

DIY Bio – meat speciation via PCR project
3D Printing with your body – a 3D scanning system using Kinect for your body
Maker Kids – interactive project gallery
Pendulum Print Bot – an airbrush robot!

Plus potentially a dark horse candidate!

Buy tickets for the faire and come see us give away $1000 to the most awesome idea!

Tinker. Hack. Invent. Make… something Awesome!

28 Aug

Robots. Fire. Drones. Lasers. 3D printers. The Toronto Awesome Foundation will be teaming up with the Toronto Mini Maker Faire for our September 2013 Awesome pitch event and grant. If you call yourself a “Maker” we want to hear about, and hopefully fund your Awesome idea, hack or invention with a $1000, no strings attached grant. The Mini Maker Faire will be held at Wychwood Barns on September 21-22 and our pitch event will be going down at 4pm on Saturday the 21st. Even if you do not submit an idea (which is unlikely because you are awesome) we would love to see you at this ridiculously fun event. Please visit MakerFaireToronto.com for more info.

Please be sure to submit your awesome idea, and reference “Maker Faire” in the project description so we know to consider your idea in association with the Maker Faire grant. The deadline is Sept 15th, we’ll let you know if you’re selected for the shortlist shortly thereafter!

Want to attend the faire? Maker Faire has given us a discount code for 20% off tickets!

Lets “Make” some Awesome!

Winners Q&A: #teetertotter

7 Jun

HashtagTeetertotter1) Congratulations! What’s your project all about?

My project is about creating a very unique teeter-totter which will be mainly constructed out of recycled, repurposed, and scavenged materials. My main interest in this project is for it to have the ability to crowd surf throughout Toronto communities, where the piece will stay for monthly increments at various host sites – free of charge. Additional focus will be put on carving various #tags and related social media indicators onto the piece. This attention to detail will help direct the viral flow of images and messages from those who visit and interact with the teeter totter. Ideally I am attempting to create a Nomadic Micro Monument.

2) Did you have wonderful experiences with teetertotters as a kid? What makes you keen on bringing this type of joy to Toronto?

I certainly did enjoy my time spent in playgrounds as a young child. But more so, I have always been interested in building interactive objects and forts to have fun with. The project embodies many ideas into the one object but with those considerations aside, I can confidently say that my desire to create the #teetertotter simply appeals to my pure-hearted intentions of spreading intrigue and joy throughout Toronto.

3) How can people get in contact with you if they want to help out?

I will be producing a website to host maps, links, contact forums, etc. to the #teetertotter project. For now, information will largely be designated to a specific (#teetertotter) section of my www.ArtHappens.ca page.

May Pitch Night

29 May

We’re having another Awesome pitch night at the Gladstone, on Thursday at 6pm! See all the details and RSVP at eventbrite. We’ll have 5 ideas vying to win $1000:

  • Bum Notes
  • I Am Torontonian
  • Toronto Is Awesome
  • #teetertotter
  • commUnity T.O.

Hope to see you all there!

March Pitch Night Video & Winners Q&A

2 Apr

Q & A with our winner, Tara Muldoon of F-You, the Forgiveness Project:

1) Congratulations! What’s your project all about?

Thank-you so much for all you and Toronto Awesome do! F-You: The Forgiveness Project is a community-based organization that asks what forgiveness looks like in a variety of scenarios and experiences. We run panels, workshops and groups on the idea of forgiveness. Sometimes we work around a specific issue such as gang violence, relationships, addiction, topics around sex, etc.

We are just over two years old and run by a team of youth/young adults from a variety of backgrounds.

2) Forgiving someone isn’t an easy thing to do; it can be very emotional. Do people sometimes cry at your events?

Our events can provoke a variety of emotions including tears, anger and everything else under the sun. It’s all welcome and understood.

3) I’d like to talk about forgiveness, or I’d like to volunteer. How can I get in touch with you, and when is your next event?

We would love to hear from you! TMuldoon at fyouproject.com is my email address and our twitter is @projectfword.

We have monthly – sometimes weekly – events across the city and the next one is April 9th at the Jane+Finch mall.

March Winner: F-You Forgiveness Project

29 Mar

Our winner this month is the F-You Forgiveness Project. Love. Loss. Heartbreak. Tara and Andrea gave an amazing presentation. Winner Q&A and pitch video to come soon!

March Pitch Night

22 Mar

The Toronto Awesome Foundation will be at the Gladstone this coming Thursday, at 6pm, for our March Pitch Night! Five groups will be pitching our trustees for their shot at $1000. The groups will be:

Big Brother Bike Thief GPS Tracker: The Big Brother Bike Thief GPS Tracker (working title) aim to help either mitigate theft or increase your likelihood of recovery. The aim is to produce a device that you can install inside your bike frame that a user can arm via a keyfob. If the device, when armed, senses vibrations for 10 seconds assumes the bike to be stolen and immediately communicates with the Big Brother website’s API with location data and informs the cyclist via text message that their bike has been stolen.

Green Rocket: Mapping cheap TTC-accessible produce: Green Rocket (TTC’s “red rocket” + green grocers; also, it’s what British people call arugula!) is a map of low-cost fruit & vegetable markets within walking distance of Toronto subway stations.

The Salaam Scrapbook Project: We are a volunteer-based organization providing a safe forum at the 519 Community Centre for queer-identified Muslims across the GTA. Many live in fear, face rejection, and risk violent reactions from family & peers. This group works to combat Islamophobia and homophobia, whether internalized or in interactions with others. In the spirit of celebrating these courageous men and women who have joined Salaam, we would like to compile an anthology of their art works: photography, poetry, personal essays, and other submissions. Ideally, the anthology would be made available in both hard-paper and digital formats.

Sage Rising: Sage Rising is an urban herb and herbal product business that cultivates in backyard micro-farms in the heart of Toronto. The company provides its customers with ethical & healthy organically-grown culinary herbs, tea herbs, herbal condiments & sauces, & herbal body products produced on a small-scale, community-based urban farm. Sage Rising’s products are marketed to restaurants, food co-operatives, caterers, & individuals who value local, sustainable, & flavour-rich foods.

F-You: The Forgiveness Project: Our team believes that our peer group (18-35 year olds) are constantly surrounded by images and ideas of conflict. Because conflict comes in so many forms – from gang violence to bullying – we created a project that inspires dialogue about what forgiveness means and looks like. We are heartbroken by growing violence rates in the GTA, as many of our team members have lost friends and family to gun violence. As a way of healing, we started a small discussion group about turning trauma into a positive project. We are a group of young people who see the concept of forgiveness as a tangible and attainable way of seeing results, with the ultimate goal of seeing violence rates lowered. To date, we have held 19 events attracting more than 2,200 attendees, the majority of whom have been youth.

Hope to see you at the event!

January Winner Q&A

4 Feb

Here’s our Q&A with Matt Boulos, of the Teen Legal Helpline, our January 2013 Awesome Toronto winner!

1) Congratulations! What’s your project all about?

We run a service called Teen Legal Helpline (https://www.teenlegalhelpline.org). It’s a website where teens can ask their most pressing legal questions and get answers from experienced lawyers. We launched a week ago.

2) Legal help can be really complicated. Do you anticipate that some users of your site will require assistance beyond email and telephone conversations?

One of the hardest things about having a legal problem is that you don’t know what to do. That’s what we’re trying to solve for teens. As you correctly point out, some situations require more involvement than that. Our lawyers understand that referring teens to good help is as important as giving good initial advice.

3) How can people get in contact with you if they want to help out?

Shoot me a note at matt at teenlegalhelpline.org. I’d love to hear from you.

November Winner: LoveCRAFT T.O.

18 Dec

The Awesome Toronto winner this month is David Carey of LoveCRAFT T.O.  Winner’s Q&A:

1) Congratulations!  What’s your project all about?
 
Thank you! It’s not everyday that someone hands you a paper bag full of money and says “go forth and make your City more awesome”. We feel really lucky to live in Toronto and can’t wait to marginally increase our collective awesomeness quotient.
LoveCRAFT T.O. is a roaming vending machine that will sell handmade art and craftwork. A vintage cigarette machine will be rescued, transformed, and filled with art. For just $5 or $10, patrons will be able to purchase unique work from local designers, artists, artisans, and craft-makers. LoveCRAFT will spend about 2 months in each location, continuing to travel around various locations in the City.
2) When do you think you’ll have the project actually selling art?  Any ideas on the initial venue?
LoveCRAFT is inspired by a similar project in Pittsburgh (the “Craft-o-tron”!), so our first step will be to connect with them for their advice. We hope to be up and running by Summer 2013. There’s still a lot of work to be done before we can consider artist submissions. First, we have to secure the machine so we know details on sizing, selection, etc. We’re also looking forward to enlisting some community partners.
The Catering & Events Manager at The Gladstone was nice enough to offer us their space for the launch of LoveCRAFT. We think that’s perfect, since that’s where our Awesome Foundation grant was awarded. After The Gladstone, we’ll likely venture outside of west end. We want to make sure that LoveCRAFT T.O. roams all throughout the City, both within arts/craft hubs and beyond.

3) I’m an artist / art lover and I’d like to be a part of your project!  Were can I follow your work, and how can I get in touch?
 
In the meantime, people can start following our new Twitter feed @LoveCRAFT_TO. Soon we’ll also have a Facebook account so people can start getting in touch then. Stay tuned!

Awesome November Pitch Night: Nov 29th

9 Nov

After a brief hiatus, the Toronto Awesome Foundation is pleased to announce our next pitch night: Thursday November 29th, 2012! We’ll hear awesome pitches from 4 or 5 people, and we’ll give away $1000 in a brown paper bag to the most worthy! Come and join us at the Gladstone Hotel.

Got an awesome idea and want to pitch us for your chance at the loot? Head on over to the Awesome Foundation Application, and fill in your 250 words! Our cutoff deadline each month is the 15th, so if you’d like $1000 to make that robot Santa Claus you’ve always dreamed of, now’s the time to get your submission in!

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