JCA Jumpstart pitch event – supporting social change makers

November 20, 2018 by Lauren Finn
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Jumpstart – the under 40 division of Sydney’s JCA – will be hosting its third annual Pitch Event next month.

Dr Nicole Cousens, Andrew Bank and Lauren Silvers

On Wednesday 5 December, five social entrepreneurs will once again dive in and pitch to some high powered sharks. This year’s judging panel comprises some of Australia’s top business and entrepreneurial minds – Peter Ivany (Executive Chairman and CEO of Ivany Investment Group), Naomi Simson (Host Shark Tank, Founder Red Balloon), Andrew Banks (Shark Tank Host & Entrepreneur), Adam Jacobs (Co-Founder, The Iconic) and David Shein (Venture Capitalist).

Last year’s winners have gone on to make a significant impact on our local community. The BRCA Genetic Testing program pitched by Dr Nicole Cousens won first prize. The Jene Screen which tests for certain genetic faults previously been done through hospitals, and has been directed to those with a personal or family history of breast or ovarian cancer. Now it has been extended and developed to offer BRCA testing online (with DNA collection kits sent in the mail) to people of Jewish ancestry (men and women) who live in Sydney at NO COST. From the funds received at last year’s pitch event, this program is now off the ground and is spreading awareness and saving lives.

Laurie Marshbaum, who founded the social venture ‘10 x10 Philanthropy’ took out the second prize. He said, “The support of JCA has enabled us to grow the core 10×10 Model and create greater impact for grassroots charities.”

A standout from this event over the past two years has been Humanitix. Founded by Adam McCurdie and Joshua Ross, it is an NFP ticketing platform that redirects booking fees for events to charities. Since participating and winning a prize in the first year of this event they have gone on to grow their social venture tenfold. Two weeks ago they went on to win a $1M prize in the Google Impact Challenge.

The prize money for this year’s Jumpstart Pitch Event has been generously funded by The Giving Forum – established in December 2015 by a group of major donors and their families as a strategic partnership with JCA. Its mission is to inspire philanthropy on a large scale and provide an enduring funding platform to guarantee the local Jewish community’s financial security and growth over the next century.

Bookings for the JCA Jumpstart Pitch Event are open – go to http://bit.ly/JSpitchnightfor more information.

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