Rapid Recovery Challenge

Improving access to jobs and money in the
of COVID-19

Watch a recording of one of our webinars

Hear more about the Challenge

What is the Rapid Recovery Challenge?

With the UK officially in recession, economic recovery is now a major challenge. There is an urgent need to support people at risk of losing their livelihoods and financial security so that millions do not find themselves out of work, out of pocket and out of prospects.

Nesta’s Rapid Recovery Challenge will find and scale tools and services that improve access to jobs and money for people within the UK, focusing on those hardest hit by the economic shock resulting from COVID-19.

The £2.8 million Challenge is funded by Nesta, in partnership with JPMorgan Chase Foundation and Money and Pensions Service. Read more about the Challenge’s partners here. Application opened on Monday 14 September 2020 and close at 12pm (noon) GMT on 26 October 2020.

If you have an idea, a solution, apply here.

If you have a question, get in touch by emailing rapid.recovery@nesta.org.uk

Watch one of our information webinars to find out more:

Our webinars have now ended but the recordings can be viewed below.

Webinar 1 can be viewed here.

Webinar 2 can be viewed here.

Challenge overview

Rapid Recovery Challenge diagram

Dani's story

More real stories

Nimo, 21, Coventry

“I think I just feel kind of incredibly vulnerable, like my life and my future is kind of out of my hands a little bit. COVID-19 definitely has impacted my short-term future. My long-term future, I’m not sure, but, I don’t know, I just feel a bit robbed.”

Dani, 31, Preston

“The prime minister told everybody to avoid theatres, and that was it. Literally 10 minutes after that announcement had been made, the email came through from the theatre explaining we can’t continue. The whole industry was gone overnight.”

Find out more about the Challenge

Timeline of the Challenge

14 Sept 2020

Challenge launches

Applications open for the Challenge

26 Oct 2020

Applications close

Submit your application before midday GMT

Dec 2020

Semi-finalist announcement

12 semi-finalists will be given £125k to develop their solution

Dec 2020-Apr 2021

Semi-finalist development

The 12 semi-finalists spend this time developing their solutions further

May 2021

Finalist announcement

Six finalist teams will be announced and given a further £150k to refine their solutions

May-Sept 2021

Finalist development

The six finalists will spend this time further developing their solutions

Sept 2021

Winners announcement

Two winners will be announced and awarded the final prize of £200k