The Westchester County Office of Economic Development is looking for county residents who may want to create home-based income streams, or launch new businesses or nonprofits. Launch1000 is an innovative, fully remote, self-paced program designed to turn concepts and ideas into business plans and startups. Born out of a global pandemic, the program offers 1000 Westchester County residents the opportunity to gain critical business knowledge, connect with mentors and help their idea gain traction.
“The pandemic has significantly impacted the ways people work and Launch1000 is an opportunity for people to write their next chapter,” Westchester County Executive George Latimer said. “Westchester County is home to a strong, supportive and resilient business community and we look forward to helping these new businesses as they launch and scale.”
Whether an individual is in the infancy of exploring an idea, hopes to create an avenue for working from home, aspires to create a business to support and improve their local community, or already has a concrete business concept, Launch1000 provides the tools to test ideas and move forward. As participants move through the phases of the program, they will receive feedback and coaching from experienced entrepreneurs, as well as introductions to relevant organizations and individuals within the Westchester business community. The program is completely online, so it can be completed from the safety of home, and is open to residents anywhere in the County. To ensure that a lack of technology does not prevent anyone from applying to the program, the Westchester County Office of Economic Development will provide laptops to residents who need them.
Led by entrepreneurial expert Pam Hoelzle, who has coached tens of thousands of early stage entrepreneurs, Launch1000 requires a commitment of 10-hours per week and is designed to help businesses launch within the next six months. Interested individuals are encouraged to apply early, as those who are accepted and meet specific performance milestones by mid-December 2020 may be eligible to receive startup grants. Applications will be reviewed, and participants admitted, on a weekly basis until the 1000 slots have been filled.
“As ‘The Catalyst’ for economic growth and vitality, we are always looking for new and innovative ways to support our local workforce,” Deborah Novick, Westchester County’s Director of Entrepreneurship and Innovation, said. “With Launch1000, we hope to jumpstart 1000 new businesses, providing new income streams for people who want to work for themselves, work from home, or launch a new business and control their economic future. This program teaches invaluable skills and helps aspiring business owners take key steps to turn their concept into a viable venture.”
Potential participants can learn more about Launch1000 and sign up to receive a notification when the application period opens by visiting: WestchesterCatalyst.com/Launch1000. Individuals who are interested in supporting Launch1000 by mentoring participants during weekly roundtables should contact Deborah Novick at 914-995-2998.