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PayPal announces the outcome of its 2019 annual charity hackathon in Ireland. This year’s Operation Hack brought together teammates from a number of PayPal offices to help solve the digital challenges of six Irish charities over a 24-hour period.
For the fourth year running, PayPal teammates and charities joined forces to develop digital solutions and systems for their most pressing digital needs.
In total, 24 people from five different PayPal offices – including Dublin, Dundalk, Paris, Amsterdam and Berlin – took part in the hackathon.
The organisations which benefitted from new digital solutions created at the hackathon include:
- Suicide or Survive (SOS), which provides support and recovery services to those in need, developed a mental wellness app with the help of PayPal teammates. The solution gives users the ability to listen to wellness guides, track their wellbeing and make donations.
- Educate Together, an educational charity which promotes multi-denominational education to help students achieve their full potential, joined forces with PayPal teammates to revamp the website structure for all schools and enable donation functionality.
- Home Education Network, which provides advice and support to families considering the option of home education, were supplied with an online community with a membership registration form, interactive networking map and a membership management database which is GDPR-compliant.
- For Ruhama, the Irish NGO that offers nationwide support to women affected by prostitution, sex-trafficking and sexual exploitation, PayPal teammates created a custom fundraising platform.
- PayPal teammates developed an app for The Sickle Cell Society, a charity that helps to spread awareness and provide support for patients and families impacted by the condition in Ireland. The solution allows users to monitor pain, communicate with medical professionals and find their nearest hospital.
- Zest4Kidz provides educational, counselling and medical support to children in Africa, India and Eastern Europe. The PayPal team helped the organisation to overhaul their website to align with its new brand and include a donations section.
SOS was awarded the prize for ‘Exceeding design expectations’ while Ruhama earned the ‘Judges award for extreme bravery.’ Meanwhile, Home Education Network was recognised for its project which was ‘Most aligned to the statement of work’ and The Sickle Cell Society was celebrated for the ‘Most awesome use of technology.’
Speaking about the hackathon, Maeve Dorman, Vice President of Global Merchant Services at PayPal, said: “We’re delighted that our teammates’ technical expertise, particularly in the areas of ePayments and mobile transactions, can make such a positive impact. The hackathon is about applying this knowledge in different areas and helping to transform the way these charities operate.
“Our teammates are passionate about making a difference in the wider community and getting involved in deserving causes – this event gives them the opportunity to do that. It also allows them to use their skills to solve digital challenges and with that comes a great sense of achievement.
“The hackathon is a fun, collaborative event that helps charities use technology for worthwhile causes and overcome digital challenges. It’s also a fantastic event for teammates because it instils a great sense of achievement and provides a unique opportunity to put their skills to the test.”
This year’s Operation Hack took place at Castleknock Hotel & Country Club in Dublin and was led by Jonathan Davies, Mid-Market and Small Business Manager for Europe, the Middle East and Africa at PayPal. The event was also supported by Maria O’Toole, Dundalk Site Lead for PayPal Gives, and Siobhan Grogan, Dublin PayPal Gives.
The judging panel consisted of Guy Thompson, Fingal Chamber of Commerce and General Manager of Castleknock Hotel & Country Club, as well as a number of PayPal executives including Tony O’Brien, Paul Ryan, Trevor Tilley and Ciara O’Hare. They assessed the projects based on a criteria of innovation, collaboration, impact, completion and presentation.