I want to build a safe and sacred space for people on the autism spectrum and their families. This has been my dream — and now it’s being made a reality thanks to Valley Venture Mentors and Pathlight
— Jennifer Bogin - Fields Center

Pathlight Challenge

A track of the 2018 VVM Startup Accelerator

 

Valley Venture Mentors and Pathlight, a leading provider of services for people with intellectual disabilities, are joining up again to launch year two of the Pathlight Challenge. The challenge offers two prestigious spots in VVM’s Startup Accelerator to startups that are creating solutions for people, particularly millennials, with developmental and intellectual disabilities (and those with autism who have no intellectual disability) to lead more independent lives.  

Last year Pathlight Fellows got lots of press, access to Pathlight stakeholders for market research along with all of the other perks that go along with being a VVM startup.

We came into the program with what we thought was a good idea. During the program, we took it all apart and put it together again, based on a lot of feedback from peers, mentors, and potential customers. We left with a lot of confidence in our idea, and we’re grateful to Pathlight for helping make this experience possible.
— Chris Landry - HabitStackr

PATHLIGHT CHALLENGE PARTICIPANTS GET... 

  • Access: Pathlight staff, clients, and their families for a level of customer development very few can attain... and at no cost!  You will be able to test your technology and find out what your customers really want.
  • Get: Five months of intense training and lovingly critical support.
  • Tap: Subject matter experts, investors, and highly engaged and collaborative peers.
  • Access: Free office space from January through May 2018.
  • Smile: Our teams get tons of marketing exposure and public relations promotion.
  • Compete: Win up to $50,000 each (equity-free!) to develop their businesses.
  • Clever Capital: Equity-free funding, distributed by judges who are all seed stage investors who can (and have) followed up with their own additional funds. 
  • Balance: The "one long weekend a month" structure of our accelerator allows people with day jobs and/or significant family commitments the ability to fully engage.  
  • Real Support: Our alumni consistently tell us that VVM and Western Massachusetts was the most welcoming environment they had ever worked in as entrepreneurs.
  • Authentic Relationship Building: You don't build a relationship overnight.  VVM's Startup Accelerator carefully creates deep connections with your peers and opportunities for you to meet potential advisors, partners, and investors multiple times so relationships can grow.
  • InclusionVVM supports diversity and inclusion in our community and in all of our programs. We are proud that startups of all industries, and founders of all stripes, thrive at VVM.

Pathlight  is looking for startups that are creating solutions for people, particularly millennials, with developmental and intellectual disabilities (and those with autism who have no intellectual disability) to lead more independent lives:

  • Health (wellness, nutrition, etc.)
  • Safety (responding to emergencies, or simply navigating their lives in a safe way)
  • Transportation

Startups addressing these challenges are strongly encouraged to apply, however, the Pathlight Challenge is open and excited to learn about all emerging innovations to positively impact their client's lives.

If you need more information, please email lea@valleyventurementors.org