CODERS 4 CHARITIES - ST. LOUIS

By the Community, For the Community

Prior Event:  Oct 16th-18th, 2009

 

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Coders 4 Charities is an effort that was initiated to involve the local IT community to help and raise awareness of local charities. There are similar events that have been held in other cities with Kansas City being the closest to us, and we're modeling our event based on it.

Our first event was held on Friday, October 16th through Sunday, October 18th, benefiting 9 charities in all, and it was a success. We'll update the Charities page with further information on what resulted from the charities. In all, over 50 volunteers showed up across all skill levels and of various subject expertise. Everyone was very proactive; inter-team interactions were evident, with subject matter experts available for consultation with all teams.

Starting from 6 PM on the Friday, we have the team leads, team members, floating-resources volunteers and representatives from the charity agencies convene at CAIT and after Kevin Grossnicklaus gave an introduction of Coders 4 Charities, each team and charity they're assigned to went to find a cozy classroom section and workstations to start the work.Work continued until around midnight and then everyone went home for a break.

Saturday morning at 7:30 AM starts with donuts and fresh hot coffee; volunteers continue to work until close to midnight again.On Sunday, everyone gathered at 5 PM to do a show-and-tell session on what their projects accomplished; ALL projects are either at the finished state or within a few hours of completion. By 7:30 PM, everyone had left - all with good feelings for having contributed to this event. Sleep is now the next order of the day.

We have pictures of the event; please go to this Flickr page to see them.

Even though this is our first event, somewhat steep learning curve due to the volunteers learning with the new tools and software packages that are used, some technical hiccups, some butting-heads with tasks division, we deem that the event to have been very successful. There are several factors that contributed the success of this event:

  • We'd like to thank CAIT for accommodating the event location, hardware and pre-installed development software

  • We have several organizations that sponsored us by providing financial support to purchase food for the event, software licenses for both development and deployment, along with some items to be raffled for our volunteers

  • The charity organizations provided people to specify requirements and testing to the teams that are assigned their projects

  • Lastly, but certainly not least, the event became successful due to ALL THE VOLUNTEERS efforts. We're extending a HUGE THANK YOU to all of the volunteers, without which none of the projects would've been realized.

We're unwinding from the event; but rest assured we want to make the next one even bigger and better. Please continue to support us in our future planning.