Founders and Coders Tech for Better
In November 2018 Intersticia UK began supporting the Founders and Coders Tech for Better programme.
The programme seeks to design, test and build new digital service ideas using developers in London and Gaza which not only gives the opportunity for graduate coders to gain experience working on real, needs based client projects, but also for those clients to take their initial ideas and turn them in to a testable pilot service.
Founders and Coders aim to encourage and develop diversity in coding, focusing not only on the coding itself, but on the entrepreneurship and community building. They seek to be an early stage incubator and accelerator for Tech for Good through actively providing education and experience, as opposed to Venture Capitalists who provide funding. It is very hard to build a business model through the learning process itself, and therefore F&C are encouraging graduates to work on real projects aims to draw key lessons from early stage projects, as well as develop intercultural skills and team processes.
This is precisely why Intersticia is supporting the Tech for Better programme, to both enable the development of prototype services that will have social benefit, and to support the graduate coders in working on real challenges. In addition the cross-cultural learning between London and Gaza is a unique learning experience for everyone.
Finally, Intersticia is keen to work with Founders and Coders and their graduates to help develop much more of a contextually driven social conscious around the business of building technology. By bringing coders from different cultural backgrounds together in a deliberate way the participants have to learn to understand differing viewpoints, value frameworks and norms of acceptability in the work that they do. We will work with them to further consider the ethical and moral questions that underpin their work, and interrogate the business models that accompany and support any technology solution.
This is just our first group of graduates and we are excited about the potential they have to truly become better leaders through the work that they do.
Our sincere thanks to Dan Sofer for inviting us to be a part of the team, and to Jo Kerr for her ongoing participation as one of our Intersticia Fellows.
Tech for Better projects 2018 – see Connect 5, My Pickle and Nightingale
Connect 5 is a UK-wide mental health promotion training programme developed from a unique collaboration between Public Health England (PHE) & Health Education England (HEE). It is designed to increase the confidence and core skills of front line staff so that they can be more effective in having conversations about mental health and well-being, help people to manage mental health problems and increase their resilience and mental well-being through positive changes.
Connect 5’s system is highly reliant on ongoing monitoring activities to ensure trainings are effective, and one crucial element is to collect and evaluate participant’s feedback. After each training session participants are supposed to fill out a survey form and this process can be cumbersome and difficult. The Connect 5 App aims to tackle this by creating a tool that focuses primarily on trainers to easily share survey forms with course participants and to collect results. Moreover the App shows and visualises individual and overall average survey results. Finally trainers can export and download all of their results. Using the app Connect 5 trainers can gain insights about their teaching outcomes over time.
My Pickle is a new social enterprise platform that helps people find support and in doing so, funds are raised to help more people access the services they need & support VCS services. Cat Divers’ (My Pickle 5 Founder and Product Owner) basic aim was to create a platform related to integrated wellness which addresses multiple health & well-being factors rather than a single issue. It is an holistic, person-centred approach and uses a combination of services, activities & technologies across all eight dimensions of wellness. The objective was to help My Pickle develop to become a Minimum Viable Product.
Nightingale is an innovative analytical software tool for the early identification of mental health and wellbeing concerns in schools.
2018 Tech for Better Graduates London
Course Facilitator: Michael Watts
Michael is the course facilitator for FAC15, who started their cohort on 29th October. In previous lives he has been a musician and teacher, and discovered his love for coding through teaching coding to children using Scratch. He was drawn to Founders & Coders as a place to train because of the emphasis on social impact projects and is now overseeing the Tech For Better programme to help develop it into a consistent and sustainable pipeline of meaningful projects for students in London and in Gaza.
Graduate Programmer: Simon Dupree
Simon comes from Berlin, Germany. Having studied politics, economics and natural resource management he has determined work towards improving social and environmental conditions through the use of technology.
“Having recently graduated from Founders and Coders I am very eager to use my software development skills within the Tech for Better programme. I am sure that together we can make huge impact and I am very excited about the chance to work together with like minded developers in Gaza and the UK.“
Graduate Coder: Joe Friel
A major outcome of the Tech For Better programme thus far is that five of the coders (Michael, Simon, Jo, Ramy and Asala) have formed a Co-Operative to take their collaboration further as The Yalla Co-Operative.