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Etsy Makes Updates to Craft Entrepreneurship and Awards Maker Cities Grants

Sep 21, 2017

by Ilyssa Meyer

Etsy.com handmade and vintage goods

We believe inclusive creative communities build stronger local economies. That’s why enabling equitable access to the opportunities we create has always been at the heart of what we do at Etsy. Over the last few years, we’ve had the incredible opportunity to work directly with community organizations, city officials, and the Etsy sellers to build programs that foster the spirit of the entrepreneurship to grow creative local economies.

That’s why, we’re excited to announce updates to our Craft Entrepreneurship program, as well as our 2017 Maker Cities grantees.

Scaling Craft Entrepreneurship

Since 2013, we’ve partnered with nonprofits, libraries, and municipal agencies to offer Craft Entrepreneurship, which aims to expand access to microbusiness education for underrepresented creative entrepreneurs. To date, the program has been offered in more than 40 cities and served more than 1,000 people.

We’re proud of the curriculum we’ve created. In order to keep up with the pace of demand and allow new partners to start using the program quicker, we’ve significantly streamlined the application and onboarding process. We’ve also created new toolkits for program administrators and updated all of our existing materials to reflect feedback from past program participants. By lowering the barrier to entry for interested organizations and further optimizing the curriculum, we’ll be able to work with even more partner organizations and increase the number of creative entrepreneurs benefiting from the platform.

If you’re interested in offering Craft Entrepreneurship to your community, please read our FAQs, and complete the organizational background form.

Introducing Our 2017 Etsy Maker Cities Grantees

Since 2016, we’ve worked hand-in-hand with Etsy sellers, and city leaders committed to their success through the Etsy Maker Cities initiative. After hosting a summit here in Brooklyn, we celebrated the successes of several action teams back home. Earlier this year, we announced a call for grant applications. From the hundreds of proposals from inspiring, capable and creative organizations from cities across the globe, we’re excited to award our first grants to two stand-out organizations:

  • Open Works was awarded an Etsy Maker Cities Program Grant to expand an existing program, Moms as Entrepreneurs (MAE), which will teach craft, life, and business skills to low-income creative entrepreneurs of color.
  • The Berlin Kreativ Kollektiv was awarded an Etsy Maker Cities Research Grant to conduct bottom-up research, which aims to quantify the creative community in Berlin, with a specific focus on the challenges faced by multinational creative entrepreneurs that are new to the country.

Etsy’s Maker Cities grant program supports local creative communities by investing in innovative projects aimed at better helping marginalized groups to participate in the creative economy. Learn more about our grantees here.

Get Involved

We’re excited to follow the 2017 Etsy Maker Cities Grantees as they bring their plans to life, and are looking forward to on-boarding many new partner organizations for Craft Entrepreneurship. We’re passionate about developing new ways for city leaders and the Etsy community to connect and thrive. If you’re interested in receiving Maker Cities updates or learning about opportunities to get involved in the future, please let us know.