What You Need To Know

The EmPOWERED To Serve Urban Health AcceleratorTM is a six to eight week intensive training and grant opportunity designed to challenge you to apply innovative, community-based solutions to help solve an urgent urban health problem.

The application period is now closed.
All accelerator candidates have been notified. Stay tuned for details.

Congratulations to the top qualifiers!

photo of Leah Lizarondo, 412 Food Rescue
photo of Francoise Marvel, MD, Corrie Health
photo of April Inniss, EekMD
photo of Kathryn Doornbos, Redemptive Cycles
photo of Anj Vu Sawyer, Southeast Asian Coalition
photo of Travis Fenderson, STEP Association
photo of Sunny Williams, TinyDocs


Step One – Look Around and See the Problem
Is there a problem in your community that has an attainable, sustainable solution for it? Once you’ve determined the problem you feel most passionate about solving, it’s time to roll up your sleeves

Step Two – Apply Online May 1st through June 30th

Step Three – Activate Your Genius

Our team will roll up our sleeves with you and you’ll have 6-8 weeks to build a plan, activate your team and implement your community project, MacGyver style (in other words, with what you have right now. Yes, it’s possible.).

The top performing teams will be invited to present their projects to a panel of judges from the marketing, media and investment communities on October 16, 2018, as a part of the American Heart Association’s Empowered To Serve Summit in Baltimore, Maryland.

At the American Heart Association, we believe in the impossible. In urban communities across the country, there are amazing stories of lives being changed by folks stepping up and solving problems others thought impossible. Through the Association’s EmPOWERED To ServeTM initiative, we are uncovering and accelerating incredible projects to improve the health and well-being of urban communities across the country.

More info about the accelerator Download Details

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Yes It’s Possible… and here’s a story of an inspirational 11 year old that made it happen!

Gitanjali Rao was upset about the water crisis devastating families in Flint, Michigan. She had an idea that could help quickly and accurately monitor water for lead. With no money, sponsors or even a space, Gitanjali pushed forward. After being turned away by everyone and every lab and school in her area, she converted her small bedroom into a ‘science room, where she developed an affordable device that quickly and accurately detects lead in water. She’s been named by 3M, the leading global science company, as America’s Top Young Scientist.

– Gitanjali is 11 years old.

See other inspirational stories.