IT4Causes welcomes Bill Flowers, our new Project Manager!

IT4Causes is pleased to announce the addition of Bill Flowers to our staff. Bill joins us with 20+ years of experience in project management, information technology and communications. As project manager, Bill will work with our volunteers and oversee the implementation of IT4Causes solutions for our nonprofit partners.

Bill Flowers

“Working with so many great nonprofit organizations is a wonderful opportunity,” Bill says. “When you consider the impact that IT4Causes will make in the lives of so many people served by our nonprofit community … well, it’s both humbling and exciting.”

Bill joins IT4Causes having worked in private enterprise, academia and state agencies. As director of web development at the University of Richmond and as senior project manager at GIC Web Solutions, Bill’s focus has been the simple premise that technology should make our work easier and more cost-effective.

“IT4Causes innovative fractional CIO model, coupled with volunteer IT support, is going to change the way nonprofit’s do business,” Bill continues. “The model is going to allow nonprofits to utilize technology that otherwise would be beyond their reach.”

Please join us in welcoming Bill to IT4Causes. Meet Bill and all our great IT4Causes volunteers at our Volunteer Extravaganza on March 2

Volunteer Extravaganza on March 2 from 6:30-9 PM!

Were your dreams of being up on the big screen interrupted by a fantastic career in IT?  If so, this is the perfect event for you!

Join us for pizza and beverages on Monday, March 2 at !mpactmakers. It’s gonna be a blast!

  • Be part of the ACTION! by participating in the shooting of an exciting new IT4Causes video by Red Titan Films (no acting experience required).
  • Learn more about how IT4Causes is transforming skilled IT volunteerism so that you can use your technical skills to make nonprofits more effective, and yet never have to commit more than 8 hours at a time.
  • Meet representatives from our partner nonprofit agencies, and sign up to work on specific projects at specific agencies.
  • Introduce yourself to Bill Flowers, our new Project Manager and Volunteer Coordinator, who’ll be your partner and guide as you work with other awesome volunteers to deliver great IT to grateful nonprofits.
  • Network with other community-minded IT professionals.
  • Be sure to mark April 11 at 1 PM on your calendar for the World Premier of YOUR video at the Byrd Theatre!
  • Please try to print and bring your RSVP, which includes a talent release form that’s needed to take part in the video shoot (else we’ll have to have you complete one on-site).

This is a free event for our registered volunteers (donations will be accepted, or course).  So go to http://www.it4causes.org/volunteer-form/ and register your info, and you’ll be taken to the EventBrite page where you can get you ticket to the Extravaganza!

We hope to see you there!

Coming soon: not just another event, a Volunteer Extravaganza!

At IT4Causes, we’re all about using skilled volunteers to get IT done for our nonprofit partners. So we’re setting up an event to give you a chance to meet our partners, to see what projects we have in the chutes to move them towards our common IT strategy, and to give you a chance to sign to help us implement these projects. And since we also like to have fun, we’re making it an EXTRAVAGANZA!  We’ll be networking, eating pizza, and shooting our next promotional video with Red Titan Films. If you want to join in the fun, pencil us in for March 2 from 6:30-9 PM. We’ll firm up details and start getting invites out in the next week. Space will be limited, and volunteers who have registered on our site will be the first to get invites, so go to the volunteer form and give us your info now!

Why Volunteer with IT4Causes?

First, Some Great Reasons to Volunteer Anywhere:

  • Help others
  • Make a difference
  • Find purpose
  • Enjoy a meaningful conversation
  • Connect with your community
  • Feel involved
  • Contribute to a cause that you care about
  • Use your skills in a productive way
  • Develop new skills
  • Meet new people
  • Explore new areas of interest
  • Expand your horizons
  • Get out of the house
  • Make new friends
  • Strengthen your resume
  • Feel better about yourself
  • And, yes, even actually live longer!

Helping others and making a difference is what it is all about.

By making organizations more productive, your efforts are multiplied

Knowing that you’re helping a great cause with your IT skills and talents is a great feeling.  And when you’re talents make the jobs of staff, board, and other volunteers at our partner agencies easier, you’re not just helping them today – you’re helping them become more efficient and more effective so they can do their jobs better every day.

By enabling our nonprofit organizations to focus on their missions and serve their clients better, your efforts are multiplied throughout their organizations and the community.

So come on, take that next step, and sign up as an IT4Causes volunteer today!  As an extra incentive, registered volunteers will be the first to get invites to our upcoming Volunteer Extravaganza!

IT4Causes needs YOU… to VOLUNTEER

You’ve got great IT skills, why not use them?

You have a resume that showcases your IT skills and talents, what better way to put them to good use than to volunteer for a great organization, like IT4Causes? Your work history is ongoing and evolving, so please consider adding a volunteer section to your resume that will serve you well and let others you care about and give back to your RVA community, as an IT4Causes volunteer.

Better than pounding nails, no heavy lifting, just using your talents to help others!

Your IT experience is a valuable asset that you have acquired over time that can benefit others, as well as you – so why not get started today? No manual labor required, and only experience needed is what you already possess and bring to the table.

Help a wide variety of organizations

We’re not IT4Cause, we’re IT4CauseS, and when you volunteer for us, you can put your specialized skills to use helping not just one nonprofit but many different agencies across a wide range of great causes. From creating the next generation of entrepreneurs to linking parents with the right services for their kids, our partner agencies are enabling awesome outcomes, and with your help, we’re empowering their great work with best-in-class IT solutions.

Part of being a great volunteer is loving what you’re doing. Find your passion, find something that you care about or something that inspires you, and then find a need in your community.

So sign up as an IT4Causes volunteer today, and stay tuned for our upcoming Volunteer Extravaganza!

Capital One

In-Kind Sponsor Highlight – Capital One

Capital One

Thanks, Capital One, for donating MacBooks and iPads!

For an IT firm, it’s critically important to have a testbed where you can test out the latest changes before sending them off to your customers.  When IT4Causes wanted to start helping our pilot agencies with solutions that run on their Apple equipment, we knew we needed to get our hands on more Macs and iPads.  So we sent out a call to our Technical Advisory Group to see if we could locate an older MacBook and maybe an iPad to build out our lab.   In a few short days, Melissa Sorbello from Capital One came back with an offer almost too good to be true:  not just a single unit, but 2 MacBook Pros AND 2 iPad2’s!  We quickly arranged pickup and got the equipment humming so we could validate our proposed “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD) security policy.  We were also able to arrange for another donation of an additional MacBook to support a new employee at our pilot customer UnBoundRVA!   These generous donations from Capital One saved us thousands of dollars and enabled us to keep moving without missing a beat.  So thanks, Capital One, for once again being such a great supporter of the RVA nonprofit community!

Campaign Progress

So far, IT4Cause’s Fall Campaign has raised $24,524 in donations, pledges, in-kind support, and matches.  That’s 38% of our goal of $65,000 so far!  We’re extremely grateful to everyone who has contributed so far, and we’re hoping that more folks will decide to chip in before the campaign officially ends next Friday, Jan. 16.  At that time, we’ll have to make a decision about the amount of Project Management capacity we can buy in the first half of 2015.  With over a dozen solutions selected and ready to go, and two agencies in pilot, we’re ready to engage our volunteers to roll out the capabilities to more agencies, but we need a Project Manager to coordinate all of their efforts.  With money raised so far, we can hire a part-time Project Manager (PM) who can help us deliver the solutions to two or three more agencies over the next few months.  If we can hit our goal in the next two weeks, we’ll be able to afford a full-time PM for at least the first half of 2015, which should allow us to roll out solutions to six or seven new agencies.  So please consider making an investment in the future of IT for local nonprofits, and encourage your network to do the same!

All Sarah wants this holiday season is Stable IT

sarah

Meet Sarah Mullens, co-founder of UnBoundRVA, an IT4Causes pilot customer.  One of our heroes, Sarah is a young educator and business professional who has dedicated herself to building a better Richmond, one small business at a time. Together with her co-founder Richard Luck, Sarah is helping a group of low-income, high-potential people with challenging backgrounds learn the skills they need to succeed as entrepreneurs, including deveolping strong business plans and getting access to the funding they need to create their own jobs.

I asked Sarah what’s on her wishlist this holiday season, and here’s what I got:

  • A nice small printer, so Richard doesn’t have to drive 40 minutes one way each time they have to produce a key presentation,
  • A donor management system, so they can more effectively raise the dollars they need to complete their mission,
  • A learning-management system, so their students can track their progress in their curriculum, and
  • Better PCs to enable their fledgling business owners with technology to support their new enterprises.

IT4Causes has got Sarah’s back and is working on solving these IT problems for her, so she and Richard can focus on what they do best. So, before you settle in for dreams of sugarplums, take a second to think of Sarah and all the good she is doing, and help her get her job done by supporting IT4Causes this holiday season!

IT4Causes Wins VCU’s Next Big Idea Challenge!

On December 8, Virginia Commonwealth University’s Innovation Gateway announced that IT4Causes was the top prize winner in their second annual Next Big Idea Challenge (NBIC). The competition’s judges selected IT4Causes to receive the Next Big Idea Award for the nonprofit agency’s business strategy, which provides information technology services to other small and midsized nonprofits using a Fractional CIO model and a common IT solution set.

According to VCU, “The NBIC is an online competition where anyone within the VCU community can submit an idea for a new company, product or service. Ideas submitted range from medical technologies and phone apps to community co-working businesses. The NBIC’s purpose is to showcase the innovative ideas cultured within VCU.” Over 40 entries were submitted to the contest, which ran from Oct. 28-Nov. 28.

IT4Causes founder and CEO Tom Anderson is studying Nonprofit Management as a graduate student at VCU’s Wilder School for Public Administration, and he has utilized VCU resources extensively to help refine the IT4Causes business model. “The sequence of Nonprofit Management courses provided a fantastic roadmap as I developed IT4Causes, and the feedback I collected from Wilder professors and Innovation Gateway partners was a great help, too,” said Anderson. “We’re very excited about this award as an endorsement of our strategy, especially given the level of competition this year, and we hope this recognition will motivate our supporters to make or increase donations and pledges to propel our growth past our pilot agencies.”

The $1,000 prize that comes with the award will be applied towards IT4Causes’ $65,000 4th quarter fundraising goal. The agency will use those funds to hire a project manager and leverage skilled IT volunteers to deploy their common set of solutions to more partner nonprofits, who will be able to provide their services more effectively and efficiently as a result.

Next Big Idea VCU Innovation Gateway translogo3

 

In-Kind Supporter – Impact Makers

IM_logo_RD4_1_resize

IT4Causes is extremely fortunate to have the support of Impact Makers, who graciously allow us to share office space with their team.  This in-kind support has been very valuable to us.  The beautiful office, meeting, and event space help us project a very professional image with all of our stakeholders.  The proximity to many of our current and target nonprofit partners, and the availability to schedule meeting rooms, teleconference phones, and projectors has made the team more productive.  And the atmosphere of IT professionalism and camaraderie in the office space makes it a great place to go and just get work done!  The in-kind support also saves us thousands of dollars a year in rent and other office expenses.

So, a huge THANK YOU! to Impact Makers for the on-going support of IT4Causes!

About Impact Makers

Impact Makers was founded by IT4Causes board member Michael Pirron in 2006.  Per their website, “Impact Makers is driven to create meaningful change for our clients, our community partners, and ourselves. We will utilize our innovative business model to transform the business value of our work into social value for the community through partnerships with local non-profits that include financial contributions as well as pro-bono engagements.”