The Stellar Community Fund (SCF) is an excellent way for projects built on Stellar and/or Soroban to receive the funding they need to launch and grow. Submitting your project with a detailed, well-thought-out, and highly-technical application is critical to a successful submission.
Read on to get a refresher on three best practices to employ to increase your chances of a successful SCF submission!
1. Prove that you understand the technology you plan to build on and that you’re ready to start immediately.
You and your team must understand how Soroban and/or Stellar work before submitting your project to the SCF. One of the most common issues reviewers find is that many teams haven’t done their research, which shows in their submissions.
Reviewers will also look for teams with a strong technical foundation, so explain why your team is uniquely qualified to build and execute the project!
- Explain your project's technical components and how they interact with Soroban and/or Stellar. Be detailed! Use process maps, technical specifications, and showcase any code you already have on GitHub or in a demo video.
- Explain why you’re using Soroban and/or Stellar over another technology.
- Beef up your team’s bio section with prior experience — bonus points if you’ve built on other blockchains!
- Demonstrate your knowledge by completing Soroban Quest or Stellar Quest, gamified learning experiences that help you understand Soroban and Stellar fundamentals.
- Get involved in the Stellar Developers Discord. Ask questions, provide feedback, and engage with the community!
Check out Sorobix’ submission for an example of a good amount of technical detail.
2. Prove that your project will positively impact the Soroban and/or Stellar ecosystems and beyond.
Technical details are important, but reviewers will also assess whether your project clearly impacts the Soroban and/or Stellar ecosystems and their target audiences.
When creating your submission, ask yourself:
- Is your project filling an unmet need in the ecosystem, such as tooling that doesn’t exist yet? Be sure to call it out if so.
- Research the Soroban and Stellar ecosystems to discover your competitors, potential partners, how to build traction, etc. How do you stand out? How can you work with others?
The reviewers know the ecosystem and its products well, and you should, too, before you submit your project.
- Does your project have a significant impact on your target audience? Your users could extend beyond the Soroban and/or Stellar ecosystems, so your project may compete with similar offerings in the Web3 space. Why would users choose your project over others?
Check out Beans App’s submission for an example of what this could look like.
3. Clearly define your roadmap and deliverables.
SCF’s structure is different from what it used to be! SCF submissions request funding for a ~3-month-long project with deliverables tied directly to the development of a Soroban and/or Stellar integration (no user acquisition). Here are a few tips:
- Don’t ask for the maximum budget if your project doesn’t need it. If you’re unsure what budget to request, develop a roadmap detailing what your team can accomplish in the next three months. Estimate the number of engineering hours each deliverable will need and the average hourly rate. Put it together, and you’ll better understand the budget to request. And don’t forget to put this information in your application!
- Ensure the first deliverable reflects your project and has a technical component that interacts directly with Soroban and/or Stellar. Reviewers look at this first deliverable in-depth, as it serves as the Proof of Intent for your entire submission.
Check out useSoroban.app’s submission for an example of a detailed roadmap and clear first deliverable.
And that's it! To help you get started, we have a very handy handbook that covers all of the above and more. If the projects interested you and you want to learn more about what it's like to participate in SCF, we highly encourage you to join the Discord channel.