The tech industry has been successful at figuring out ways to make things faster, easier, and cheaper, and now it is changing the philanthropy and nonprofit sectors, too. In a story that examines the ways in which wealthy, young tech entrepreneurs are turning to philanthropy and transforming nonprofits, the Chronicle of Philanthropy cites CEO Jim Fruchterman on what he has identified as successful models for engaging tech donors.
Benetech is one of select U.S. nonprofit organizations to receive seed funding under Google.org’s Global Impact Awards program. Google.org has awarded Benetech the seed grant for the development of secure, open technology tools to advance human rights abuse research and action. Benetech will lead a human rights technology and data consortium and advisory committee to devise technical requirements for a comprehensive human rights information platform. It will also develop open source prototypes for testing in the field. This project will serve social justice groups, civil society organizations, journalists, activists, and researchers.
At Benetech, we’re fortunate to have had long-time support from funders who have been willing to bet on us. One foundation that has been a committed supporter of our work is the Lavelle Fund for the Blind. Over and over again, it has allowed us to pilot and eventually scale technology solutions that empower disadvantaged communities. The Fund demonstrates the incredible social impact that private philanthropy can create through smart investing strategies and risk tolerance.
My personal goal is to channel the aspirations of the technology community to do more social good. More and more of my time is spent around both raising money and raising awareness of how much more could be done with technology to increase social impact. In this update, I’m delighted to be able to share Benetech’s latest efforts to do both. First, I’ll cover our biggest fundraising effort of the year: individual philanthropy is crucial to us; it’s the portion that makes 10X impact possible! Then I’ll share the latest stories on the impact of our tech volunteerism and human rights tech efforts as well our new tech leadership.
Today, #GivingTuesday, is all about giving back to support causes that make the world better, and volunteering time and talent can be a great way to do that. If you are looking for technical skills-based volunteer opportunities with real, lasting impact and active learning though service, then we, at Benetech, invite you to join a growing global community of technical contributors—software designers, developers, product managers, translators, technical writers, quality assurance engineers, and more—who make a difference by volunteering with our SocialCoding4Good initiative.