Today is finally the big day! We officially began our hackathon this afternoon. I am really excited to be on a team of folks who will be supporting Campfire Innovation. My team is made up of four other Effect.org participants and one refugee who is a volunteer. Together we have very strong bench of backgrounds and talents. Each of the Effect.org folks on my team work at Google except for me - representing Salesforce.org. Our part time team member is actually a refugee from Afghanistan who is tagging along of the ride. The interesting thing is that he was a translator for the US Army during the war and his English accent is very southern. He laughed when I complimented him on it. The talents on the team include experience running engineering groups, a UX researcher, and two others who work in a sales capacity like me. It is a honor to work with such smart folks and learn from them along the way.
Like I said, we are working with Campfire Innovation. This organization's founder is named Ionna. You will hear me reference her a few times in this post. Last year Ionna set out to begin a nonprofit that does three things: 1) increase collaboration within the Greek grassroots NPO community 2) give access to resources for these NPOs 3) map grassroots responses. She has made a lot of progress and has narrowed her needs for this weekend down to two topics. My team will be focusing on the topic of creating a sustainable fundraising strategy for Ionna. This will take her to the next level organizationally. This is an exciting project since it allows me to bring some of my strongest professional skills to the table.
We started off our conversation by diving deeper with Ionna about the goals and current business processes she has for her organization. This required a lot of questions and poking holes into her current operation. She was incredibly patient with us through the process. It provided a great deal of information and helped us to drive the scope of the weekend. The big take home is that we will be focusing on fundraising. The categories that we will be diving deeper on are: fundraising models, pipeline generation, initial pitch, and marketing strategy. I know that a few more will come out of this as we move along, but I think it is a great start. We envision this as being a mini version of a BCG style strategy engagement.
Overall this was a great day! I failed to mention that we had the morning free, so I took some time to visit the acropolis. It was a great experience and was able to take the picture that is in the top of this post.
As always feel free to donate to Effect.org. Link is below!
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