Who We Are
Forge Arkansas is a nonprofit organization dedicated to stimulating innovative and entrepreneurial activity by creating a collaborative ecosystem in Northeast Arkansas.
We will accomplish this by providing spaces, services and resources for self-directed exploration, education and cross-disciplinary collaboration.
Forge Arkansas desires to provide world class facilities, supported by key services, that bring ideas into reality and forges a city that values diversity, culture, and prosperity.
Forge Arkansas will achieve our vision by creating the following facilities, each with their own missions, yet all working toward the vision of Forge Arkansas:
Forge Labs: Makerspace Network
- Provide STEAM training to adults and youth;
- Provide access to tools, equipment, and training;
- Enable local inventors and entrepreneurs through soft and hard prototyping spaces;
- Create a place where individuals of any age can explore their passions for Making;
- Network with other makerspaces to create collaborative projects, programming and events; and
- Deliver a demonstrative skill to individuals and their prospective employers.
Forge Factory: Business Incubation & Acceleration
- Educate and train entrepreneurs start-up skills through technical assistance programs;
- Identify and introduce entrepreneurs to networks that will help them define, develop and validate a replicable and scalable business model;
- Provide a flexible, vibrant and effective work environment for a startup to grow with programs that facilitate expansion and transition outside of the incubator; and
- Introduce startups to industry experts, service providers, investors, angels, VCs, and mentors.
Forge Foods: Local Food & Gardening Network
- Establish and maintain a seed library open to the community;
- Create and support economic opportunities for local farmers and businesses;
- Provide land access to residents as well as knowledge, tools, and resources that empower residents toward increased self-sufficiency;
- Create a democratic food co-op to promote cooperative ownership and leverage community buying power;
- Expanding access to healthy foods among disadvantaged members of the community; and
- Provide access to a commercial kitchen and canning facility.
Forge Ahead: Community Enrichment & Quality of Life
- Partner with local producers, businesses, government, transportation, education, and other organizations;
- Create economic development opportunities;
- Develop in-house workshops to provide the community a chance to share their knowledge;
- Facilitate and encourage collaboration between The Forge departments, as well as the community; and
- Provide educational opportunities through workshops, classes and certifications.