Donation FAQs

How do I get tokens?

Donors receive tokens when they create an account and make a donation to There are other ways to get tokens, some of which we are still building! We’re currently developing a system for our entrepreneurs and volunteers that gives them tokens for taking certain actions - like making a mentoring match. We want our whole community to have a say in which campaigns win.

How does an entrepreneur become eligible for a startup grant?

Every young entrepreneur who is eligible for our startup grant program has been vetted by Perhaps most importantly, they have matched with another member of our community - they have access to our mentoring program and training resources to support them.

How long does each funding round last?

Duration varies, but typically funding rounds will be approximately one month long. You can always check back on our site to see how many days are left in the current funding round.

How do you select the winner(s)?

Each funding round has 1 or more young entrepreneurs who can win a startup grant for their business expenses. The number of winners in the current round is noted on the site. The young entrepreneurs with the most tokens (or “votes”) at the end of the funding round will be selected. For example, if a funding round ends on September 30th and has two winners for that round, the top two entrepreneurs with the most tokens when the round ends will both be selected.

What does the entrepreneur actually win?

Entrepreneurs “win” the amount of money they requested on their campaign page in their budget, up to a maximum of $2,500 per entrepreneur. Entrepreneurs will receive this award in the form of a cash grant, upon signing a grant agreement. This money does not need to be paid back nor does receive any material gain for it, however the money does need to be spent on business-related expenses.

What is the difference between a vote and a token in the Friends & Family Fund?

There isn’t one! We use the words “vote” and “token” interchangeably.

What is a token?

Technically, when you vote on an entrepreneur’s campaign, you’re sending them our custom, digital, blockchain-based token in a way that is immutably recorded to our publicly-viewable ledger. This provides transparency to our program by letting our community see who is sending and receiving the votes.

What if I make a donation and vote, but the entrepreneur I voted for doesn’t win the campaign?

If an entrepreneur receives votes but does not win the funding round, the entrepreneur automatically becomes eligible for the next round, and they get to keep all of the tokens they received. Votes do not expire. So even if your favorite entrepreneur doesn’t win this round, your support will increase their chances in the next round.

What is my donation used for?

We are a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. Your donation helps us provide free business mentoring, training, and startup grants for underrepresented young entrepreneurs.

What if I would rather support a particular entrepreneur directly?

Donations through our platform are tax deductible in part because we are not “passing on” donors’ money directly to the entrepreneurs. Rather, donations are given to our registered non-profit organization. We would prefer to minimize the complexity of this offering, but these rules, as well as other regulatory guidelines, prevent us from allowing donors to give directly to our entrepreneurs. We designed what we hope is a fair and engaging experience where our community has a voice in selecting entrepreneurs. If you would like to give a young entrepreneur money directly, we would be happy to put you in touch with that entrepreneur if they are interested.

Why use blockchain technology?

A core part of what we do at is to use the best technology we can to support our community and philanthropic mission. Technology allows us to scale our services quickly, to pretty much anywhere, while keeping our costs down. With over 11 million underrepresented young adults in the US alone who want to start a business, we have to use technology to make a real impact here. Our entrepreneurs need a combination of business mentoring, training, and funding to chase their business dreams. Our volunteers want a meaningful and flexible way to use their skills to give back. Our donors want more transparency, to feel the impact of their contributions, and see results.

A blockchain-based token provides a scalable, transparent system to enhance our community’s trust in our mission and work. Our token is built on the Hyperledger Fabric, and anyone in the network can easily send tokens, and verify where they are being sent. Our community doesn’t have to take our word for it, since the transactions are endorsed by our node partner(s) and are not able to be changed by alone.

Among other things, our long term vision for this token includes the ability to incentivize positive activity on the platform, and unprecedented transparency in to how donor money is being used by Right now, when donors give to, they are provided tokens that can be used to help us determine which entrepreneurs should receive startup grant funding. And any visitor to the platform gains deeper insight in to our activity. We will continue developing the blockchain-based ecosystem and leveraging the advantages of this emerging tech. Stay tuned for further developments!