The Food Innovation Fellowship is a joint program between Food Well Alliance and the Center for Civic Innovation to strengthen the business acumen and leadership of entrepreneurs in the food movement. This opportunity is only available to Food Well Alliance Local Food Grant recipients. 

Applications are due on October 3, 2017 at 12 noon. 

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In addition to the 2017 Local Food Grant you have already received from Food Well Alliance, the Food Innovation Fellowship provides six (6) Local Food Grant recipients with:

  • Monthly classes and trainings focused on: (1) building a stronger business model (2) building your organization’s financial sustainability (3) supporting your peers in the food movement and (4) telling your story to potential customers, investors, and partners.

  • One on one coaching sessions to build on what’s taught in the classes and to strengthen your leadership style and approach. In these sessions, we also review and provide feedback on written and oral materials.

  • A peer network from across sectors that you can learn with and from through open conversation and site visits.

  • The opportunity to pitch to potential customers, investors, and partners in a Food Innovation Showcase. You will receive an intensive training on storytelling that you’ll be able to use in the future.

  • An additional $500 stipend to develop and execute on a health and self care development plan.

Post graduation benefits

After March, the Center for Civic Innovation and Food Well Alliance will work with you individually to support your growth over the next six months. This is not required, but is optional for fellows. We work with professional partners to host monthly sessions that provide operational support, from marketing to accounting to legal. This is only available to participants in the Fellowship program.

Key Dates

October 23, 2017: All day orientation. This is mandatory for all selected Food Innovation Fellows, and it will give you a sense of how the program is structured and you’ll be able to meet alumni and other fellows across sectors.

October 2017 to March 2018: Two classes per month (TBD based on group schedule). One of these classes will include a site visit that you will participate in. You schedule your one-on-one sessions individually.

March 2018: Showcase and graduation


Who this program is for

  • People looking to make social impact in the Atlanta region. We are looking for food entrepreneurs that have a social mission to their work. This isn’t just about making money. It’s about improving the lives of people through your work. We are looking for entrepreneurs whose products, services and programs serve specific communities that lack access to or education on nutritional food or through programs.

  • People looking to build a stronger business model and financial foundation for their work. While your work may not be done with the only intention to make money, we cannot ignore that you need a strong financial foundation to do the work that you do. We want to help you work through building a realistic and strong business model. We want you to be able to make strong financial decisions and position yourself for new customers and contracts. You should know what scale and growth means for you and your organization. Ultimately, the stronger your business model is, the more people you can serve.

  • People interested in learning from and contributing to a peer-driven, collaborative network. One of the greatest assets of the fellowship program is the opportunity to spend time with other leaders in the food movement. You learn with and from them and they do the same with and from you.

  • People interested in strengthening their leadership potential. Leaders come in all different forms. Loud and quiet. Assertive and passive. Agitator and facilitator. Through this fellowship, you’ll be able to explore what kind of leader you are and work toward the kind of leader you want to be.

  • People interested in decreasing their dependency on grant dollars. Raising money from foundations is just one way of bringing revenue to your organizations. We want to help you diversify the way you earn money, so you are never at the mercy or risk of one source of revenue to keep you stabilized.


  • Attend a minimum of 80% of the classes/trainings (there are two classes per month)

  • Do one one-on-one session per month

  • Host a site visit where the other fellows get to see your work during one of the classes

  • Complete an on-boarding, midpoint, and exit evaluation

While this program does not offer any additional grant money nor does it guarantee any future grant money, Food Well Alliance will take your participation and growth into consideration for their next grant cycle. This is not a reason to do this program, but it does provide additional opportunity for those that do.