Non-profits for Opportunity Hack 2020

👋Hello Opportunity Hackers!

On this page, you will find specific problems facing 10 non-profits. As you read through them, try to think through the scope of the solution that will allow for a simple solution that can be completed within this week.



Check out this video for all of the information you need to know as a Hacker.

1. Team up: Don't have a team of 3 to 5 people? Jump into the respective #npo- Slack channel for the non-profits you would like to volunteer with. The Slack channels for each non-profit are listed below:

    1. #npo-payir-thoorigai

    2. #npo-zuris-circle

    3. #npo-dress-for-success-san-jose

    4. #npo-girard-training-stables

    5. #npo-victory-sports-foundation

    6. #npo-janaagraha

    7. #npo-sunday-friends-foundation

    8. #npo-greenwood-project

    9. #npo-daily-bowl

    10. #npo-vidyodaya

2. Declare your team: Only one person from your team should join #team-formation to declare your team and get a team number and Github repository

3. Pick your Top 3 non-profits: Work with your team to identify your Top 3 non-profits to work with, we have limited slots available to ensure every non-profit has at least one team to work with. We ask that you come up with this mental model of your Top 3 non-profits so that if your first choice is taken, you still have two more options.

4. Declare your non-profit: Only after you have formed a team, and as your team decides on the problem and non-profit to help, join #npo-selection, make your selection by reacting to only a single non-profit with a taco parrot at the top of the channel. You may need to wait up to 5 seconds for an automated response. We want to ensure that we have at least one team working with each non-profit, so slots will be limited!

Problem Statement

The mission of 'Dress for Success San Jose' is to empower women to achieve economic independence by providing a network of support, professional attire, and development tools to help women thrive in work and life.

Scenario

I am Jane, a professional woman who likes to buy nice clothes, shoes, and accessories. I am now retired and looking to donate my work wardrobe to Dress for Success San Jose. The clothes will help women in need of professional attire. After I have donated, completing the tax receipt is time-consuming, outdated, and cumbersome. I also want to donate money in addition to my clothes, but the whole process takes 15 minutes. This makes me hesitant and resistant to donate clothing and money. I am trying to improve the lives of women that are served by Dress for Success San Jose.

  1. How might we make it easy for Jane to pre-complete the tax receipt and add her monetary donation on her own before dropping off her donations?

  2. How might we see and recognize donors at the time of donation?

Impact

Having an online tax receipt will enable donors to drop off faster and increase our community support. Staff time will be utilized more efficiently and directed towards helping more clients.

We believe that anybody should be able to ride horses. Finances are a lousy reason to tell someone that they can't learn to ride. We believe that being around horses is good for humans, physically, mentally, and emotionally. We don't believe in just showing up and riding. We believe in getting your hands dirty, feeling your horse's soft fur, and getting to know your horse before climbing on. We believe in community. Being outside is GOOD, especially for kids, but for grown-ups, too. We believe that it is okay for only one person to win a blue ribbon. We also believe that it is okay to be frustrated about this, as long as you take a deep breath and resolve to try again. We believe in experiential learning and working through a problem to try to solve it.

Problem Statements

Girard Training Stables challenges adaptive and traditional riding students physically, mentally, and emotionally. We provide a safe place to express emotions (even it means whispering in a horse’s ear) and to make mistakes. Those mistakes can turn into huge confidence builders and learning events for students. We find pride and joy in watching our students grow and learn. From cleaning stalls, grooming horses, tacking up to riding the hands on attention to detail motivates students, volunteers, and instructors alike.

Within all these moving pieces Girard Training Stables is trying to provide safe, fun, well planned and organized lessons to all of our students. However, challenges are faced when:

  1. Volunteers sign up for lessons they aren’t qualified to help with

  2. There is no volunteer for a lesson and it goes unnoticed until lesson time

  3. A horse isn’t able to be used/being used because it wasn’t clearly communicated.

From pens, paper, and white boards to Excel spreadsheets and free volunteer scheduling programs we have tried to keep organized and reach our goals. In the end we feel frustrated, unorganized, scattered, and potentially ill-prepared for our lessons. This in turn could result in a student not being able to ride or worse yet not even being able to have a lesson that day; which breaks their heart and ours. In some cases this might even cause physical setbacks to their bodies.

Considering all of this:

  1. How might the volunteer coordinator assign specific tasks to volunteers so that they can't sign up for the wrong positions but still give the volunteers freedom to sign up for their time slots?

  2. How might we inform instructors and volunteers of horses being used to coordinate the use of the 15 horses we use regularly?

  3. How might we communicate times and dates needed for volunteer positions and then inform the instructor about who their volunteers are for their lessons?

  4. How might we take the many forms of planning tools used and condense them into one easy-to-use program accessible to the volunteer coordinator, instructors, and volunteers?

Impact

A solution to these challenges would allow our non-profit to have clearer organization (one application instead of the 3-5 programs we use now), help us with community outreach (both internal and external community), allow for better communication with volunteers and staff, and make scheduling easier.

With a 24-year track record, Sunday Friends empowers very low income families to break the generational cycle of poverty by fostering positive development in children and equipping parents to invest in their children's life success. With our unique Learn & Earn program, participants earn credits by participating in education programs, and then redeem those credits for basic necessities and other household items.

Problem Statement

To develop a new system for our Learn & Earn ticket-earning program that addresses this problem:

Scenario

I am a low-income family member with mobile-only access to technology. I am trying to use Sunday Friends’ ticket system to learn how to make good financial decisions independently, but I have no way of accessing my ticket balance or transaction history. I also don’t know how much monthly interest I have earned. There is no way to view it on my phone with authentication with my Google account. It makes me feel like I’m dependent on someone else to help me rather than empowered.

  1. How might we display ticket balance & transaction history to family members who only have a mobile device? Right now this is done verbally by our staff when asked.

  2. How might we reduce the dependency on someone else to provide a family member’s ticket balance? Right now this is done verbally by our staff when asked.

  3. How might we make all ticket balances and transaction history available using Google sign-on?

  4. How might we manage all tickets, including deposits, withdrawals, and applying interest using a family members Google account or with Google Products with an automation platform like Zapier or IFTTT (a code solution is okay as well)?

☝️Above is a screenshot of the current system which is written with Ruby and hosted on Heroku.


Impact

A new solution for our ticket system would empower our family members as they develop financial management skills by reducing their dependency on others to access their ticket accounts. Our Learn & Earn ticket system is a key component of our financial literacy program for youth and adults. Learning to make good financial decisions is one of the core competencies of Sunday Friends’ mission to break the generational cycle of poverty.

#npo-daily-bowl

💌 Paddy Iyer

🌎 California, USA

Founded in 2016, Daily Bowl rescues excess/blemished produce and rapidly redistribute to local non-profits that serve the hungry members of our community. We have recovered and distributed close to 2 million pounds of food within Alameda County.

Problem Statement

Within our website, I want to allow volunteers to enter hours, track produce donations, and let our receiving agencies track and enter donations (visualize ticketing system).

Apart from this, we have security issues with our website, which we need severe technical help.

  • How might we leverage our existing work we have done with Airtable as a backend database?

  • How might we simplify data capture around food donations and reporting? We need to record the weight of the food we are receiving from the food donor and generate a report for us, for grant writing, and for donors at the end of of the year for tax purposes.

  • What might be the easy & efficient way to capture food pickup location information? For example, a food donor needs to indicate where they are and how we can best collect their food donation (e.g. located at this address or GPS coordinates, come in through side door, etc.)

  • How might we display the current location of our van that is en-route to pickup food in order to engage others nearby?

  • How might we make it easier for the driver to pickup the food including recording the weight and save the data?

Impact

Doing all this will provide smooth and safe navigation with our website. Creating a quasi ticketing system will help us track any issues that might arise. Once such a system is designed and functional, it will bring about our family of donors, receiving agencies, staff, and volunteers all under one umbrella. And we visualize such a portable mobile system being of immense value in demonstrating the effectiveness of our mission to various county and city agencies.

#npo-vidyodaya

💌 Rahul Kumar

🌎 Tamil Nadu, India

Vidyodaya's mission is to improve the quality of education received by underprivileged children in Adivasi communities and establish a culturally appropriate learning system with the community's active participation.

  • Every Adivasi child completes schooling;

  • Every child gets a good education;

  • Every child can pursue learning (not only schooling) up to whatever level they desire and

  • To support and create a cultural environment.

Problem Statement

Vidyodaya's existing website is a year-old template with so many navigation links, and it is tough for visitors to find the information they are looking for, and it is less appealing.

  • How might we modernize our current website?

  • How might we make our website easier to use?

Impact

A redesign of the website will allow for migrating to the content management system, improving navigation paths on the front end of the site, and implementing a responsive and modern design. Also, fulfill social media integration and increased engagement with the audience.

#npo-greenwood-project

💌 Bevon Joseph

🌎 Illinois, USA

Greenwood Project’s mission is to introduce Black and Latinx students to the financial industry. With a focus on education, exposure, and immersion, Greenwood’s purpose is to bridge the opportunity gap between students from underserved communities and career pathways in finance. Their educational mission is achieved through a robust curriculum that teaches students’ the skills they need to succeed in a financial services internship. After rigorous training, students are immersed into an internship experience to get hands-on experience and build their resume. Greenwood Project’s goal is to capture students in high school, build their interest, teach them the skills to be successful, coordinate an internship experience for them, and help them translate that experience into a full-time offer.

Problem Statement

Since mentoring is vital to our model, we only accept students' numbers to match with mentors each year reliably. Our growth is limited by inefficient processes that, as a result, require substantial human capital. The human resources involved with recruiting mentors, collecting information, searching for the best student match, and checking-in with mentors regularly limit the number of students we can ultimately accept into the program. If we had a tech solution that made this process more efficient, we could reliably get even more students. With the same amount of human resources, we hope to reach more students by leveraging a tech-based solution.

  • How do we create a mentor-matching platform inside of our Greenwood Project app?

Impact

While we only plan to serve 150 students this summer, we want that number to grow exponentially. We want to see measurable change in the minority makeup of the financial industry; but, that will only happen when thousands more Black and Latinx students are exposed to the industry, taught the skills to succeed, and complete successful internship experiences. Creating a mentor-matching system would be one part of our goal to make many of our processes more efficient, ultimately allowing us to serve even more students with our available human capital.

#npo-payir-thoorigai

💌 M Ramanathan

🌎 Tamil Nadu, India

Thoorigai was born in 2011. Initially, the women created simple handbags with their newly acquired skills, slowly experimenting with various patterns and designs.

At present, with nine women in the team, Thoorigai has blossomed into a bag-making venture that has produced and sold over 15,000 bags. With a name that means feather-pen or quill in Tamil, Thoorigai is a result of the creativity and aspirations of rural women who have evolved about 100 different bag designs. Now they handcraft colorful bags and home furnishings using eco-friendly material. Over the years, they have honed their skills so well that they can make sustainable living out of this income.

Problem Statement

Currently, most of the housekeeping is done manually. Automating this will help us carry out the NGO activities in a better way.

  • Manual billing with GST

  • Manual sales orders records

  • Existing codes for finished bags

  • GST filing done with our auditor is a manual reconciliation

How Might we,

  1. Create an integrated solution for inventory management, sales, billing (GST filing), payments, effort estimation, customer database

  2. Create a system that will understand our inventory in hand.

Impact

An automated system will improve efficiency and accuracy.

#npo-janaagraha

💌 Avishek Tiwari

🌎 Karnataka, India

Janaagraha was founded in 2001 and is a non-profit organisation that aims to transform the quality of life in Indian cities and towns. We work with citizens to catalyse active citizenship in neighbourhoods, and we work with governments to institute reforms to city-systems. Quality of life = quality of citizenship and quality of infrastructure and services.

Over the last 18 years, Janaagraha has been working extensively with Schools, Colleges, communities, municipal bodies, civil society groups and corporates, using the power of technology (I Change My City) to bring about two way communication between children, citizens and city governments. We are now leveraging our networks and relationships, providing our technology tools to strengthen the hands of city governments in speeding up the process of real time information dissemination, response management towards effective containment.

Problem Statement

Revamp the feature in IChangeMyCity mobile app(Android / iOS) for citizens to take surveys while traveling through a given location, in order to report the characteristics of the path taken during travel. The Crowdsourced data we should be able to capture would include:

  1. Walkability of any footpath by ability to report

a. Report broken footpath with location

b. Report encroachment with location

c. Any other obstacles with location

2. Visibility on any street in dark hours.

a. Measure the visibility/light intensity on a street at a given point in time

b. Geolocate the measuring point

3. Report Drivability of a road

a. Report and Geolocate the potholes

b. Report and Geolocate Speed breakers

c. Report and Geolocate any other obstacles

With the crowdsourced data, achieve the following:

  1. Ability to showcase data on maps

  2. Analyze data to find out

a. % Walkability on a street

b. % Visibility on a street

c. % Drivability on a road

Impact

Crowdsourcing data on civic assets like parks, playgrounds, streets, public toilets and generating insights on their quality; giving an easy access of this data to citizens and civic bodies will influence data driven discussions and decisions on city and neighborhood budgets between citizens and civic bodies in a collaborative manner

Over a period of couple of years and budget cycles for the cities, we envision a marked improvement in prioritizing areas that need immediate attention and plan for areas that need attention in the mid to long term timelines and thus witness improvement in infrastructure and service delivery from local civic bodies

This will translate in to improved quality of life in our cities and towns

Our purpose is to provide support to families, elderly and homeless during unforeseen circumstances. Providing food boxes, furniture, clothing and other much needed resources.

Problem Statement

We are looking for a Zuri’s Circle App that allows us to take donations, updates on volunteer opportunities, allows people to request a resource and have access to support.

Key Features

1. Send a push notification to any person who has the app

2. Google or Facebook Login

3. Donation through PayPal

4. Volunteer signup

5. Send a message back

Impact

This will help us by making it easier to accept donations, make it easier to sign up for volunteering, and make it easier to see when and where we have a program or resource available to our clients.

#npo-victory-sports-foundation

💌 Sri Vidhya

🌎 Tamil Nadu, India

To make sports reachable and feasible to all children and in particular to children of the downtrodden. Victory Foundation's goal is to inspire a love of sports and physical activity that will be the foundation for healthy living, while simultaneously helping to build participants' positive relationships, inculcate positive behaviors, involving youths in social initiatives, improve their self-confidence, independence and ability to deal with adversity.

Problem Statement

We are looking for an application for centralized student, coach and hub management to track and audit the ongoing activities.

An ideal solution will have:

  • An admin portal to monitor the activities and can generate reports

  • An option for coach management with geo tracking in mind that allows coaches to log various hub activities and student registration/sports activities

  • An option for centralized student management

Impact

The solution will be a one-stop-shop for all kinds of data & report pertinent to students, coaches, and activities, thereby helping us take quicker actions towards the mission.