GiveCamp: Coding It Forward

North Texas is home to over 28,000 nonprofits, and of those, 83% have budgets of less than $100,000. With limited resources and time, the need for technology is sometimes deprioritized.

Dallas GiveCamp is a weekend-long workshop dedicated to supporting those needs. “Software developers, designers, database administrators and project managers donate their time to create custom software for nonprofit organizations,” according to the website.

The result? “We have a great time, and our local nonprofits come away from the weekend with tools and resources they didn’t have before,” says Ryan Gilmour, who is organizing the GiveCamp event for Dallas.

Ryan works for Slalom Consulting, one of the sponsors for the event. Many of the staff and volunteers at GiveCamp work for tech companies, and the GiveCamp weekend is a great opportunity for them to use those skills for causes that matter to them.

“I think of GiveCamp as a Habitat for Humanity, but with code,” Ryan says. “We’re helping nonprofits and charities build on their mission, providing them with ways to track how they’re doing business, enhancing their presence online — it’s rewarding for the volunteers to provide these nonprofits with more ways to do good.”

Such an undertaking requires a good deal of strategy — the nonprofit projects that are accepted are planned out and teams (including project managers) are assigned.

“We want to ensure that we’re providing the nonprofits with realistic expectations — sometimes that means scaling back on a project idea so that we’re able to give them something they’ll actually be able to implement immediately after the workshop,” says Ryan. Last year, GiveCamp supported 18 different nonprofits and charities.

GiveCamp begins on Friday, October 17. You can register to volunteer here — visual designers are especially needed, so if you’d like to help support the nonprofit sector here in North Texas, sign up today!

Rachel Winstead

Rachel is a freelance writer and works at Soap Hope in downtown Dallas. She hates the term "disrupt," tweets about startups, and appreciates a well-crafted hashtag.