The Innovation Fund has awarded three City projects with funding for its fall 2021 cycle. The Innovation Fund is an internal City grant opportunity funded by the Mayor’s Fund for Philadelphia. The Innovation Management Team in the City’s Office of Innovation & Technology manages the Fund. 

Each cycle, a competitive application process takes place. The Innovation Fund supports pilot projects created by City employees that proposes new ideas to support government functions. 

The Innovation Fund had a total of $25,000 to award for this cycle. The amount was split evenly among the three projects. 

About the projects

The below projects have received funding. 

  • Department of Public Health, Maternal, Child and Family Health Division (MCFH): “Menstrual Product Pantries” ($8,333) 
    • The Maternal and Infant Health Community Action Network (CAN), the Free Library of Philadelphia, and Grab-n-Flow* will install 4 menstrual supply pantries in west and southwest Philadelphia neighborhoods. These pantries will be at library locations to provide free menstrual products to residents. The team will work with community members to: 
      • develop the pantry design; 
      • determine which items to include; and  
      • create a plan for outreach.  
    • MCFH aims for this pilot to grow and evolve with the support of partner communities. 
    • *Grab-n-Flow is a free-to-the-community menstrual and postpartum product shed in South Philadelphia. 
  • Office of Sustainability, Zero Waste Partnership: “Zero Waste Strategies Micro-grant Program” ($8,333) 
    • The Office of Sustainability will provide micro-grants to fund Zero Waste strategies and projects. The program will prioritize awards to businesses that are often underrepresented in sustainability spaces. These micro-grants will help lessen the initial financial barriers for small businesses. Grants will range from $250 to $1,000. 
  • Police Advisory Commission (PAC): “Community-Police Complaint Mediation Program” ($8,333) 
    • The PAC will work with the Philadelphia Police Department (PPD) to create a new police complaint mediation program for low-level civilian complaints. The goal is to increase trust and build mutual understanding between the police and community. The Community-Police Complaint Mediation program will:  
      • reduce the time it takes to resolve complaints;  
      • give the community a voice in the complaint disposition process; and  
      • increase understanding between police officers and community members.