Launch Lab

God is using people like you to shape the world. Launch Lab is where innovative people like you will move ideas from concept to working model. The possibilities are endless. The vision begins with you!

In the Launch Lab you will get the tools you need, and learn to leverage them to shape world-impacting ideas. You’ll find:

  • Expert advice for moving your idea forward
  • Practical coaching from consultants
  • A free workbook with stimulating content to take your idea from concept to concrete model
  • Advice from key thought leaders and organizational leaders who, like you, started with an inspired Kingdom idea
  • New collaborators
  • Attractive space to bring your idea to life
  • Win seed money for your idea model

Lab Hours, Location and Staff

Launch Lab will be open daily December 28-31, from 12:30-7:00 p.m. and is located in the Washington Room, on the corner of Washington Avenue and North 10th Street (inside the Renaissance Grand).

Josh Kwan, Trainer

Israel Vicars, Lead Coach

Christine Weddle, Coordinator

Stories

As you get ready for Launch Lab at Urbana 12, urbana.org will be posting some examples of great ideas to inspire your creativity.

Giving More Than Food to the Working Poor

Did you know that Americans throw away approximately 40 percent of their food supply every year? That the average American family of four ends up throwing away an equivalent of up to $2,275 annually in food? Or that a 15 percent reduction in losses in the U.S. food supply would save enough to feed 25 million Americans annually?

When Barry and Suanne Birch heard that bread was going to waste at a local organization in Portland, Oregon, they began picking it up on an on-call basis. They began by giving it away from their front porch and eventually co-founded Birch Community Services (BCS). Today they are in their second warehouse (18,000 feet2) providing food to more than 600 families. But that’s not all!

“We’re a hand-up, not a hand-out,” say the Birches. In order to shop at BCS, people must go through an application process, pay $50/month, volunteer twice a month, and attend a financial accountability class. In addition, there are a variety of classes (i.e. gardening) being offered.

The lives of 600 families are being changed all from one simple act. What’s your idea and/or one simple act that can turn someone’s life around? Join us at Launch Lab to get your idea in motion!

charity: water

Multiple times a day we turn on the faucet and clean water comes pouring out. We often let the water run and run, taking it for granted.

To access water throughout much of Africa, women or children currently walk an average of three miles carrying two 5 gallon pails that will hold up to 80 pounds of water. Even then, that water may be putrid. But they have no choice. How else will they grow their crops, feed their family, wash their clothes? The options are severely limited.

After volunteering to work on one of the Mercy Ships, Scott Harrison came back a changed man. His eight-month experience led him to found charity:water, a non-profit organization now helping the world’s poor develop their own clean water wells. The beauty of this plan is that all members of a village are involved in the construction of a well, as well as develop and maintain a Water Committee. This design allows men and women to work together in the decision-making process, oftentimes providing the first leadership opportunities for women.

The results? Reduced health issues, increased crops, clean clothes, and children receiving educations that will benefit their village in the future.

Whether or not you’ve had the opportunity to take a mission trip or volunteer with a non-profit, God may have given you an idea that can change people’s lives. Come to Launch Lab and let our Trainers, Consultants and Coaches help you take your idea to the next level. Your idea can make a difference!

Pedal Power Changes Lives

Can you imagine having to spend 6 hours a day, 3-5 days a week just doing laundry? Walking miles to get to water and then washing your laundry piece-by-piece.

When Alex Cabunoc and Ji A learned this was daily life for many of the world’s poor, they decided something needed to be done. That’s how GiraDora—a combination washer and spin-dryer came in to being.

At a production cost of only $40, the portable plastic tub is filled with soap, water, clothes, and then covered with a lid which is used as a seat. The user then sits on the tub and pumps the spring-loaded foot pedal, tranforming the tub into a washing machine!

Currently being field-tested in Peru, the GiraDora is alleviating health issues, moldy clothing, and beginning to generate income through laundry services, rentals, and direct sales. Future plans are for wider distribution in South America and India.

The GiraDora project has been recognized by both the Dell Social Innovation Challenge and the International Design Excellence Awards.

Your Turn

What idea do you have that will change peoples lives?

Comments

Outdoor Adventure BAM with the Unengaged

For security reasons, my description below is vague. Suffice it to say, my calling is to the unengaged. I will come by the LaunchLab to present my idea in detail! Below is an abstract of the visions and dreams I’ve been given. Please read twice with your eyes wide open. Thanks!

In places with 0% engagement it is often important to find strategic and creative approaches to legal and legitimate presence. Adventure is a unique tool with great potential for relational engagement with UPGs. As a BAM, an Outdoor Adventure Philanthropy could provide a catalyzing intersection for various transformational services to the local people. For example, a key part of my idea involves equipping local (let’s say Himalayan) adventure guides with professional skills in mountaineering, glacier trekking, ice-climbing, backpacking, rock climbing, and hang-gliding such that they can provide life-changing experiences in the world’s highest mountains. Essentially outdoor adventure creates a liminal ordeal that creates a unique bond, which is very similar to what Dr Victor Turner calls “Comunitas” in his research on rituals of transformation. When deep trust is established through intense shared experiences (like avoiding an avalanche together), this deep trust can open closed doors, and provide apt context for storytelling, and the world’s greatest narrative can forever change these key people who can each carry hope back to their villages. With their backpacking skills, these guides could potentially tag peaks never tagged as well as reach UPG communities never reached. The goal of such an organization would be to spark a people movement and provide holistic transformation, not just to the adventurers, but the local communities, as well as the international guests/clients.

Other services would be a vital part of this as well. Certainly first aid and rescue skills would be necessary. English education for instance, could also be a joint venture in this project because tour guides would benefit from English fluency in order to facilitate adventure tourism. English language skills could also allow these guides, and any others who take these classes, to advocate for their clans and communities. An Environmental Care and Conservation service could allow for not only eco-tourism but also for projects such as Clean Water, Renewable Energy, Sustainable Agriculture to end erosion of the mountains. This is increasingly important with consideration of climate change. Also, these people would be able to warn their villages about Human Trafficking, AIDS, and other risks that globalization brings ever closer to them.

This service would also uniquely reach the ever-growing group of international thrill-seekers and outdoor enthusiasts, and would provide a relevant encounter in the context of what this group loves with so much abandon. Reaching this group has amazing potential: if someone’s willing to risk their life to climb a mountain or climb a precarious ice cliff, what else would they be willing to risk everything for? Yesterday's evening session addressed this question quite well. My idea for this organization would be to lead the way with excellence.

I am looking for guidance from BAM experts in how to bring all these ideas together where they intersect and create a plan about how to begin making this dream into a reality.

Ways out of Poverty

I have attached an article about students from the slums of Paraguay playing Mozart and traveling around the world to perform with violins made from recycled trash from their slums! This idea also made me think about the possibility of people starting businesses that use recycled materials in the slums while hiring people that live there. Through these businesses, the Gospel can be shared with these people!

http://worldnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/12/17/15965768-a-way-out-of-the-...

God bless,
Heather

Drinks for Freedom

Hey Urbana,
My name is Jaryd. I became a believer in March and my life has never been better. I'm studying to become a history teacher.
This past summer I was able to work with the New York City Urban Project through Intervarsity and we focused on what the world would look like if there were more fair trade and organic products. I had a difficult time convincing my friends how we could all make a difference in this issue. So I started thinking about what so many college students do...drink.
What would it look like if college kids were aware that they could invest in freedom when they go for a beer run? I'm thinking of an idea that would increase awareness for college kids and make fair trade and organic drinks easily accessible for Greek life and students as a whole. We would tell them about the gospel when they ask why they should spend the extra money to get these type of drinks.
I know this idea is not the typical idea for justice but it's just an idea.

God bless,
Jaryd

Good idea!

Jaryd, that's a great idea. I'd check out some of the booths in the exhibit hall geared towards conserving God's world. I know one of the guys that helps out with Eden Vigil, and I can certainly recommend checking in with them. (I learned recently from them that bananas take TONS of resources to transport and am considering buying them less.)

Ministry to the Blind

I am currently a teacher of the visually impaired, and I have a desire to help people who are blind and visually impaired from all parts of society, rich, poor, orphans, and immigrant groups, especially in unreached areas of the world. If these people and their families are reached with the Gospel, they can be the start of house churches to impact all of a society. Then the rich can help the poor, and the Gospel can extend to all people groups in a society. Music can also play a tremendous need in helping these people since many of them love music! If anyone is interested in networking about this idea at Urbana, you can e-mail me at hmh5566@gmail.com.
Heather

Innové Project

Wanted to share that Innové (http://innoveproject.org) has up to a quarter million in funding. Must be from the greater Minneapolis area however.

I'll be at Urbana and will make myself available to share more about how you can find additional sources of funding for your ideas.

College Impact and Life

Hey, Urbana!

Two ideas: one is to have a greater impact on the unbelieving population of campus and encouraging people to do that. Being a "city on a hill." Are there ways that have been/should be tried out?

Another idea involves encouraging people to fight the murder that is abortion. The unborn are human and have the right to life. I know there are many organizations involved in this already. However, if we could start one for Christian high school and college students, that could have a greater impact on decreasing abortions. This movement would also encourage adoption for the mothers who desire it. It could also help provide for the mothers as well as being there for those who have already had an abortion. If this became more of a high school/college movement, it could have a greater impact.

Yes, these ideas are vague, but hopefully we can make them more concrete at Urbana! See you then!

~Linda

Resource for Idea 2

Hi! I'm also passionate about ending abortion and helping women who are facing unexpected pregnancies, etc. Students for Life of America is doing some of what you're talking about on college campuses all around the States. This is their site: http://studentsforlife.org/
I hope this helps you find some resources and ideas! I have no idea is there are orgs that work with high schoolers in particular. I hear that most abortions are performed on college-aged women. Fight the good fight :)

With Hope,

Kelly

Sustainable Living Community for Homeless

Hi All,

I have an idea, and I don't know where it could go. But the idea is to create a cooperative living community that would ultimately be mostly self-sustaining and self-run by formerly homeless residents. I imagine a self-governing community that empowers the residents to take pride in themselves and to learn to be self-sufficient to better their situations and inter-sufficient with the community of residents around them in order to help one another better themselves and give to their community. This community would provide a place to live and also a place to grow food and/or raise animals in order to provide sustainance and a source of income, such as selling the products locally at a farmer's market. It would not require permanent residency, such as a case where a person becomes unemployed and displaced for a time until they are able to find another job.
This would be a privately-run endeavor, not using government aid. It would require significant buy-in from the local community in order to thrive. It would heavily involve prominent members of the homeless community in initial planning and recruitment as well as for ongoing maintenance and development of the community.
As just one person, I don't have the knowledge or understanding necessary to undertake this sort of project. But I encourage and welcome discussion with anybody who might be interested in carrying this idea farther.
shinyl123@yahoo.com

Sustainable Living

Hey! I also have this vision of implementing urban design or planning principles into what we know as missions. Maybe under the church planting branch, not sure. I would like to hear more about your idea at Urbana along side what current projects are possibly being done in this matter within our urban centers. See you soon!

Anna

Sustainable communities

Hi,

This post caught my attention because sustainable community/city planning and smart growth is a special interest of mine. I am finishing my senior year at UC Davis as a Community and Regional Development major, and I'd love to talk to you about your ideas.

I am definitely not an expert in the field, but from what I've learned so far in my studies, it is essential to define 'sustainable,' 'community', 'shared', and the 'local'. Also, what does leadership look like, and how does the state and church play a role in obtaining financial resources?

Thanks!

Community living

I love your idea. I am very interested in sustainable living/ community living. Would love to hear more.

The Homeless and Seeing God

There are two things that I'm passionate about that I have wanted to do/have done something about lately.
First is the issue of homeless people and the stigma that people place on them. It really bothers me when people simply decide to ignore the reality and relevance of the situation of these people around them, and remain unchanged in themselves by these people's real desperation. It is only a few bad choices or simply bad circumstances that can get a person to that place, and I hate to see people in need go unhelped, and the people with plenty conveniently ignore the issue. Now I know that these people need to be given something sustainable, and that's something I've been trying to figure out...my original idea was to create a kind of care home just for the homeless where they could get food and fellowship with others (music, games, studying, job searching), but I see that that doesn't really address the root of the problem. I know it's hard for them to get jobs with the situation that they are in, because of transportation issues and their struggle to keep up personal hygiene/appearance for a job well. Perhaps it would be most beneficial to create some kind of regularly-occurring workshop open to offering training on how to successfully get a job even while they are in their circumstances. I'm not sure. I'm trying to think of something that's truly do-able and long-lastingly beneficial for the homeless population. Any ideas on this?
The other thing that I have been inspired to act upon lately is the need for God to be recognized in the ways He works in our daily lives. This goes for everyone, everywhere, at any point in time. We can always come to see God working in a situation if we ask Him for help and simply look for His hands. Thus I have created a website (just three days ago actually), called God's Daily Presence, in order for people to have a place to share their personal stories of how God has been working in their lives, and also be encouraged by others' testimonies of God's powerful presence. The vision I have for this website is that it will cause a shift in people's perspectives to live more in light of God's presence in their lives, which will strengthen their hope, courage, humility, and praises to God. I think of the verse Proverbs 3:6..."acknowledge Him in all you do, and He will make your paths straight." I think that this is so true, and that if we learn to more regularly recognize God's moving presence in our lives and around us, we will become more bold and effective representatives and disciples of Christ.
If you would like to check it out or share what God's been doing in you life lately, the site is: godsdailypresence.weebly.com
God bless!

Ministerial Theater

My dream is to found a traveling ministerial theater company. The basic outline is to have "home theaters" in various parts of the country, like New York, Boston, Dallas, LA, Chicago and Detroit, and the theater group would travel from place to place performing and holding workshops.

The theater itself won't necessarily be bible stories, but shows with really strong Christian messages that will portray the gospel to people who aren't actively seeking out the Lord. The hope is for the performances to be used as an evangelistic tool that will create a gateway for God to work in the hearts of non-believers and to give Christians new in sites into His word and how to live their lives for Him.

As a seasoned theater director, I've found directing to be a powerful opportunity to reach out to actors. Acting can be challenging, therapeutic, and if done properly, completely life changing. My dream is see actors and audience members give their lives to the Lord and use their hopes and dreams for Him.

Ministerial Theater

Hi! You all have just expressed my my thoughts exactly. I'm a music ed/performance major with a design and technical theater minor. God has really shown me the power of theater and has given me opportunities to to write and direct theater. I'm working on a play now and I'm look to get my grad in theater education. I'd love to be a part of your discussion. roscoe.jamie@gmail.com

We should definitely meet up!

We should definitely meet up! I love to write plays and this is an idea that I've also had! This would be something really cool! I would love to meet all of you guys! You can email me at david_divad145@yahoo.com

ministerial theatre also!

Hey anonymous, we gotta talk! I am "seasoned" as well and recently completed my MFA in Scenic Design....and have felt the nudging that the purpose in all that has to do with connecting the power of the theatrical experience to the need for a wider presentation of the love of Christ in the culture. I don't know the how, the when, the where, but I like your vision! cmthecker@yahoo.com

Theatre!

Super intrigued by this idea. I was Managing Director of a theatre company in college and produced/music directed many shows. I am very passionate about exploring the intersection between missions and theatre. tracytung87@gmail.com

GLOBAL THEATRE MINISTRY!

Hello to both of you! My name is Taylor and I'm currently in Undergrad for Theatre and Religious studies! We all should talk. I like what both of you had to say! Theatre is so powerful. It's cathartic, its emotional, its funny, it's powerful, and it's definitely Christ filled! Feel free to e-mail me! luckenbillt@etown.edu

Short Bible story films

I've enjoyed a good television program for as long as I can remember. Keeping an eye out on visual media, it's dawned on me that television and film is a really powerful means of transmitting ideas, and that the medium of film can be used to great effect. Its availability on various platforms, including the web, means that most people anywhere in the globe can access ideas in this format - plus, you don't have to be literate to understand it. For a while I've been thinking about producing a few key bible passages into a short film format, telling God's story that way and sharing His message of the Kingdom with thousands that might not hear it otherwise.

That's really cool

This is cool. I'm a freshman in college who's interested in a film minor and who is definite art major. I feel like TV really can impact any culture and can really spread great messages. Keep on going!

I appreciate your comment. It

I appreciate your comment. It can be a fine line, but visual media can definitely be a force for the kingdom!

I'm a multimedia major in

I'm a multimedia major in California and I love your idea. Can't wait to hear more and see where you go with it. Keep it up!

Katie

I'm an animation/game design

I'm an animation/game design undergrad student, with a strong interest in any moving visual media format, including 2D/3D animation, games, film, and any oddball traditional media that can be invented. I'm also currently taking an acting class and finding it extremely fun.
If you have a project idea to start on, I can offer my meager skill set, and whatever few connections I may have.

I've had the same thoughts before about telling God's story in media formats, and I know it's been done before in various ways, but I've never truly acted to find or gather a team together for it. URBANA seems a good place to start, no? :)

hey there. yup, urbana

hey there.

yup, urbana sounds like a great place to start on something like that! As i'm thinking through this potential project, i'm aware of the various visual media that have had an impact on me, from art, animation to film, and in my mind all of these have pros and cons, and can be used in various ways. There's a particular project that's been on my mind for ages, using the manga/anime format, that i'd love to hear input on. my main issue has been staying faithful to the heart of the biblical message, while using this style of animation and storytelling without compromising either one. I'd love to hear your thoughts...

Short Bible story films

Darlington,
I'm a media criticism and production M.A. student, and I love short films, especially those made for web. I like your idea! What stories do you want to tell, and what context would you like to put them in (our time, biblical times, if our time, then what culture, etc.)? Can't wait to hear more!
Bethany

hi Bethany, Reading through

hi Bethany,

Reading through Mark's gospel, you get this fast-paced story-telling technique that is mostly action, not that many words. Mark forms a picture of who Jesus is through these interactions he has with sickness, death, the spirit world, the natural world. Some of these stories suggest very strong images in my mind (eg pigs rushing headlong off a cliff), and I'd like to center in on those visceral images that can convey very quickly, and with the same force that Mark's gospel does, who Jesus is, and what he came to do. five or six short clips that cover the same material Mark does, for example...

I'm a fan of really old things, and i love history. there's a place for placing these stories in a modern context, but for me what tends to stick the most and give me a sense of what was happening is to stay as close to the history as possible. i'm actually eager to see if it's possible to create companion pieces (almost like what Eastwood did with Iwo Jima and Flags) one being a historical set piece, and the companion piece being set in a parallel cultural 21st century setting.

Music Program to Bless Communities

ARE YOU A BAND OR ORCHESTRA GEEK???

My name is Taylor and I'm a music education major at California State University Sacramento, and bassoon is my main instrument. ("What the heck is a bassoon?" http://youtu.be/2gXh83hNnWw)

The dream in my heart right now is to start an instrumental music program somewhere in the 10/40 Window (no idea where, yet!) as a legitimizing ministry to a community in need of the Gospel.

Teachers impact individuals and communities in BIG ways and music is an incredible gift that is loved the world over. God has blessed me with musical talent and a desire to teach to impact lives for the better, and I would love to use these gifts to serve Him and share the Good News with people who need it who might not have another way of hearing!

I'm still a few years from getting my degree and credential and may go on to do a Master's in ethnomusicology or just get some more teaching experience, but right now I am all about NETWORKING with musicians, music teachers, music industry professionals/business people and any other advisors, consultants, supporters, dreamers, and artists that I can!

Providing actual musical instruments to the community I know is one big task I need to do more research on.

If my idea is interesting to you please contact me!

taylorjoy1989@gmail.com

See you at the conference!

Taylor

Music Ministry

Hi Taylor,
My name is Heather, and I also have a degree in music education, and I play the piano, flute, and the bassoon! I am interested in networking as well! I am currently using music to work with and impact students who are blind since they love music! I would love to use music to impact people in the 10/40 window!

My e-mail address is hmh5566@gmail.com.

Power of Music

Hi Taylor,

My name is Gefei and I recently graduated from an university in BC, Canada, with an information science degree. Although my degree is not really relevant to music, but I love music and I believe music has the power to change lives.

I play music everyday in order to brush up my instrument skills. If we can collaborate on projects of any format in the future, I would be more than happy to connect with you and others who share the same passion in music at the conference.

I currently reside in Ontario, Canada.

JGefei@gmail.com

Thanks

Music is Divine

Taylor, my name is Oladipo, and I recently graduated from Bowie State University in Maryland with a B.S. in psychology. I am completely in love with the idea of using an instrumental music program to minister to a community in need of the Gospel. There is definitely a need in my local community, and I've done a little research on low-income neighborhoods California. I believe a program such as the one that you proposed could really initiate a healing/reconciliation process in your community or any community.