Alabama Nonprofits Increase Community Impact through Technology
TechBridge welcomed 185 guests to the Cahaba Grand Conference Center in Birmingham, Alabama on March 3, 2016 for the TechBridge Digital Dinner, a celebration of technology’s role in empowering nonprofits. TechBridge, a nonprofit that drives community impact by bringing affordable technology and business expertise to other nonprofits, raised $110,000 from 35 sponsors to serve more of Alabama’s hardworking nonprofits.
The Digital Dinner, hosted by the TechBridge Alabama Advisory Board, was the capstone event in the 2016 Alabama Digital Event Series headlined by Accenture, Alabama Power, BBVA Compass, BlueCross BlueShield of Alabama, Dasher Technologies, Insight, Motion Industries, Spectrum Business, UAB, World Wide Technology, Inc. Attendees caught up with old friends, made new connections, and learned about TechBridge’s services to local nonprofits and the avenues through which they can get involved.
It is encouraging to witness the passion and leadership among those in Alabama’s technology community. You won’t find a more committed group of leaders than the TechBridge Alabama Advisory Board. They are working tirelessly to provide nonprofit agencies with the same technology capabilities used in their own businesses. Enabling nonprofit agencies to stretch limited resources farther through technology-enabled efficiencies means more lives impacted. That is the objective: to help nonprofit agencies have greater impact.
—Scott McGlaun, CIO of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alabama & Chair of TechBridge Alabama Advisory Board
The evening culminated in a live text-to-pledge crowdfunding campaign to adopt a technology project for the YWCA Central Alabama—an organization that works to eliminate racism, empower women, stand up for social justice, help families, and strengthen communities. The live campaign exceeded the goal of $12,000 and received pledges of $14,650. The pledges will be a game changer for the YWCA Central Alabama’s current manual process of tracking key stakeholder data, enabling TechBridge to implement an integrated database that empowers them to better manage operations and report outcomes to supporters.
Just as Thursday’s crowd adopted a technology project for YWCA Central Alabama, so did the 2015 Alabama Digital Dinner crowd for Grace House Ministries—a nonprofit long-term group home for girls in Fairfield, AL, who have been removed from the custody of their families due to abuse or neglect. Last year’s crowdfunding goal for Grace House Ministries’ learning management system project was $5,000, but raised $9,430. Since implementation, they’ve been able to successfully track and celebrate the step-by-step progress of each girl’s education.
Like the crowdfunding campaigns supporting Grace House Ministries and YWCA Central Alabama, TechBridge matches funders (corporations, foundations or individuals) to much-needed nonprofit technology projects every day through its Adopt-a-Nonprofit program.
The inaugural Alabama Digital Event Series in 2015 raised $77,000 from 19 sponsors, fueling TechBridge’s growth from serving just five nonprofits in Alabama a year ago to serving 34 today. The 2016 Digital Dinner solidified the local IT community’s support of the power of technology in building the service capacity of Alabama nonprofits. Plans for the 2016-17 Alabama Digital Event Series are currently under way and will be announced in upcoming months.[rule]
Founded in 2000, TechBridge is a nonprofit that provides other nonprofits with the tools, resources and relationships they need to apply business strategies and technology to alleviate poverty. This is made possible by support from TechBridge’s network of corporations, individuals and foundations. Their Adopt-a-Nonprofit® and technology grant programs provide nonprofits with funding vehicles for their technology needs while TechBridge’s fundraising efforts, including the Digital Event Series (now in Atlanta, GA and Birmingham, AL), unite the technology community to celebrate the impact IT can have in strengthening our community.