Changemaker (n) – One who desires change in the world and, by gathering knowledge and resources, makes that change happen.

The Horizon Foundation, United Way of Central Maryland, Women’s Giving Circle and Community Foundation of Howard County are igniting and recognizing new and continued innovation in our community with the Changemaker Challenge. Think “Shark Tank” for social change! This biennial event awards funding for project ideas that promise to make a difference in Howard County, especially after an unprecedented 2020. That’s why our theme for the 2021 Changemaker Challenge is – Innovate. Cultivate. Uplift.

Despite all the strengths of our community in Howard County, we recognize that many pressing problems continue to persist. Many Howard County households do not earn enough to meet a basic “survival budget” and face barriers beyond their control that limit their ability to become financially stable. Chronic diseases like diabetes disproportionately affect people of color in our community. Public transportation remains a hurdle for residents who need to get to work, school or grocery shopping without a car. The list goes on.

Fortunately, Howard County has a long history of tireless work by many individuals and organizations that have brought creative solutions to some of these pressing problems. With the Changemaker Challenge, we are excited to spark and celebrate new and continued innovation in our community.

We want to hear the best out-of-the-box ideas for social change!

Learn more here


Horizon Foundation

Since 1998, the Horizon Foundation has invested $53 million in community programs, including grants to more than 300 organizations serving the county, from after-school programs to faith-based organizations to health care providers.  

Women’s Giving Circle of Howard County

The Women’s Giving Circle is building a community of philanthropists and creating a permanent legacy to address the needs of women and girls in Howard County. We pool our dollars so we can have a greater impact together than we might otherwise have alone.

United Way of Central Maryland

United Way of Central Maryland makes the communities it serves, including Howard County, stronger. The organization works directly with families and individuals to keep them in their homes and out of shelters, with kids who are falling behind in school, and with people who need easier access to healthy food and jobs that pay the bills.