‘Gift the Code’ hackathon helps bridge digital divide for six charities
TORONTO – Technology has changed the landscape of giving, driven largely by millennial preference for seamless digital experiences in all aspects of their lives. A new Charitable Giving study by Capital One Canada found that 2 of 3 millennials would rather support multiple smaller charities than one large one, but the majority of those who have interacted with smaller, local charities say they rate poorly in their use of technology (59 per cent).
The shift to supporting tech-savvy charities has made it hard to compete for some organizations, particularly small ones with limited digital resources, and can result in thousands of dollars in lost donations. In fact, the recent Charitable Giving survey also found that millennials are more likely to donate to charities that offer digital payments (53 per cent), and are more likely to trust charities with a strong digital presence (50 per cent).
Capital One Canada is helping bridge this digital gap by hosting its first-ever Gift the Code™ hackathon. The hackathon will support six charities that make a difference in the Toronto community.
“Capital One is committed to bringing convenient digital solutions to our customers, and we understand the importance of knowing how to connect with Canadians online,” says Nathalie Clark, Managing Vice President, Capital One Canada. “It’s important to us that Gift the Code brings our charity partners closer to the technology expertise they need to make an even bigger impact in the community.”
The Gift the Code will be hosted by technology expert Marc Saltzman and held at BrainStation’s Toronto campus from Friday, October 21, 2016 to Sunday, October 23, 2016. In just 40 hours, participants passionate about problem solving will brainstorm, build and submit technology solutions to address specific digital challenges faced by the partner charity organizations.
“I’ve seen first-hand how much the tech industry wants to give back, to help provide tools and knowledge where it’s needed most,” says Marc Saltzman, technology expert, journalist and author. “Whether it’s to help communities recover from natural disasters, provide hardware, software and tutorials to underprivileged students, or in this case, helping small and often-underfunded charities do more with less.”
Charities supported during the Gift the Code Hackathon were selected based on their size and accessibility to digital technology. Some of the challenges participants will tackle include the following:
- Prosper Canada – A national charity is seeking ways to enhance financial literacy and empowerment for people with low incomes through online learning communities and user-centered solutions.
- Second Harvest – The largest food rescue program in Canada needs its data to be more easily stored, managed and accessed by its team.
- Women’s Habitat – A women’s shelter and support service is looking for enhanced functionality and visual appeal in its online donation system.
- Toronto PFlag – A support, education and advocacy charity for LGBTQ individuals and their families needs a digital solution to find parents of LGBTQ individuals who can act as mentors to new members.
- Holland Bloorview – Canada’s largest children’s rehabilitation hospital is looking for better digital ways to collect relevant feedback from the children it works with.
- Blake Boultbee – A community-based outreach service in east Toronto requires a digital organizational tool to help manage its volunteers. – CNW