34SP.com Blog

Tech for Good: Changing lives with technology

Last week 34SP.com colleagues attended Manchester’s first Tech for Good event. Tech for Good is a meetup of professionals from the tech and charity world who are interested in the application of online and digital solutions to social issues. It is a fantastic way to network with other charities and gain knowledge about how they apply their technical skills to helping the less fortunate.

34SP.com were proud to sponsor the event held in Manchester on Thursday, and colleagues Ray, Nina and Kayleigh attended the event with an interest to learn more about the community.

The event started at 6.30pm and everyone was greeted by Josh from Reason Digital; one of the organisers of the event. Along with Reason Digital, the event was put together by Techsoup who covered meetup costs, and ThinkRise who were kind enough to host the event.

The event featured a couple of talks. Firstly Matt Hayworth of Reason Digital presented his talk ‘Doing good with digital’ where he told the story of an inspiring campaign where the company used website responsiveness to engage viewers and create a more personal link between the viewer and the person they were featuring in their fundraising videos.

For example we saw a study where a sufferer of Neurodisability used a mobile phone to communicate with others on a day-to-day basis. After watching the video we would be left with text which informed the viewer ‘Whilst you were watching this video on your mobile phone, this person has been using theirs to do what we typically consider to be very simple day-to-day tasks.’

The video would change to a different case study depending on what device they were viewing on – to show the viewer how their specific devices were helping sufferers of Neurodisability on a day to day basis. The campaign can be found online here and opened many of our eyes to how the application of technology was heavily improving the lives of those with Neurodisability who otherwise would not be able to communicate with people in the conventional way.

The second talk came from Fay Schofield of Brooke. Brooke is a charity specialising in improving the lives for working horses, donkeys and mules. Fay talked about how technology and social marketing helped their charity engage with customers and help to get their message out to larger audiences.

The presentation involved a case study where Brook had posted live updates on various social media platforms. The audience in this case were taken on a social media journey which followed the life of a donkey working in the coal mines of Pakistan.

Fay spoke about how technology and social media has helped them hit a larger audience and promote their charity beyond the capabilities that an offline campaign possibly could. For more information about their campaign involving the coal mine donkeys visit this page.

After the two featured talks there were several lightning talks ranging from around two to five minutes per speaker. Each speaker explained a way in which technology was improving their charities capabilities.

34SP.com came away from the event feeling uplifted and inspired, and we look forward to seeing more local events from Tech for Good.

34SP.com began offering free hosting to UK registered charities in 2004, and we are proud to still offer this service to any worthy causes which might be in need of our web hosting services.