Thursday, January 13, 2011

Colorado Springs Give Camp

It's finally here. This weekend is the first Colorado Springs Give Camp and my first attempt at organizing an event. I'm happy to say that I selected this event to help a charity in need utilizing my skills, and what I love to do; Write Code. Starting Friday evening, we will be at DeVry University in Colorado Springs with a team of developers, database admins and designers to contribute our skills for a local charity.
GiveCamp is the brainchild of Microsoft Sr. Evangelist, Chris Koenig, and since 2007, has been helping non-profit organizations across the country at different locations over different weekends.

IMG00151-20110112-1850This weekend, along with other participating GiveCamps in 14 US cities, we will be writing code and drinking caffeinated beverages and make up a first ever National GiveCamp. Through Microsoft's efforts and logistics, we are lucky to have National Sponsors such as Domino’s (free pizza for volunteers); Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (free coffee); DeVry University (facility space); Coca-Cola (Drinks), and Pluralsight (free training for volunteers). More importantly, I feel our local sponsors share equal recognition, such as TEKsystems and Colorado Technology Consultants.

The heart of the GiveCamp is to develop a system for Crossfire Ministries, a non-profit organization that would probably not have the financial or staffing means to complete these projects. Crossfire Ministries, is a non-profit providing food, clothing and basic living necessitous. They are in need of a redeveloped website, with a donor database, basic scheduling, automated features and social network presence. Our major sponsor, DiscountASP.Net is provided the charity with free hosting and free database service for the non-profit

So what is in it for the volunteers. Developing customer software takes special skills and plenty of time. Aside from this being a selfless task for the volunteers, they will have opportunities to participate in virtual training sessions with organized by Chris Koenig out of the Dallas Microsoft offices. Moreover, we have completed stocking some amazing SWAG bags. Lastly, giveaways.... here is a list of a few prices we will raffle off this weekend:

  • Office 2010
  • Visual Studio 2010 Pro
  • CMS License
  • Keurig Coffee Maker
  • Pluralsight Training Subscription. 

The 14 U.S locations holding a GiveCamp this weekend are: Austin, Texas; Phoenix, Arizona; Birmingham, Alabama; Colorado Springs, Colorado; Dallas, Texas; Atlanta, Georgia; Houston, Texas; Nashville, Tennessee; Dallas, Pennsylvania; Fayetteville, Arkansas; New York City, New York; Malvern, Pennsylvania; Redmond, Washington; and Clayton, Missouri.

I'd like to thank the people that helped me, starting with my wife, for motivating me and sacrificing the time I spent away from her shooting emails and reading/writing updates at night, and for being our runner organizing meals and buying supplies. There are also the people at the South Colorado .Net User Group and Colorado Springs SQL Server User Group and Julie Yack and her peeps at Colorado Technology Consultants for helping me get connected with the right people and helping me organize the event.

.Lastly, here is a list of our sponsors, whom without them, we could not have put on the event:

TEKsystems for providing Lunch
Dominos for providing dinners
TechSmith for their generous donation to buy supplies, breakfast and snacks
Green Mountain Coffee Roasters for hot caffeinated drinks and the Keurig Coffee Maker
Coca-Cola for cold caffeinated drinks
DiscountASP.Net for hosting the web app and database servers for our charity
Microsoft for their efforts in planning and the goodies to giveaway

You can see more of our sponsors on our website, Follow our GiveCamp of Twitter or Facebook over the weekend to see live updates on the events.

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