VOICE at the inaugural Charity Hack

Mindy O’Brien, Coordinator of VOICE Ireland, wrote this blog post about her recent experience at Charity Hack. As Mindy explains, Charity Hack was an innovative idea which brought together five charities and a group of ‘hackers’ to develop new campaigns.

T-shirt quote charity hack“I think I’m a little bit in love with everyone” declared Bernadette from Care after Prison, a charity that offers ex-prisoners a safe environment and support to continue with their goal of leading free lives, during the first (and hopefully annual) Charity Hack.

Charity Hack, the brainchild of Kevin Delaney from the Irish Cancer Society, brought together five charities and around 25 hackers (people with fundraising, communications, charity and other experiences) to develop new campaigns. Charity Hack 2013 was held last week for 12 hours on a beautiful Saturday, though none of us regretted being inside. It was an incredible and invigorating experience!

Voice of Irish Concern for the Environment (VOICE) was one of the charities chosen to participate. I felt honoured to be included with such amazing charities as Rainbows Ireland, Deaf Kids, Care After Prison and ACT for Meningitis.

The day kicked off at 9:00am with much trepidation and excitement. Four extremely talented people with fundraising and communications experience were assigned to work with VOICE for the next 12 hours. I was privileged to team up with Matt Lewis from the Irish Cancer Society, Ed Hurrell from Fundraising Ireland, Christine Brennan from the University of Limerick and Maria Martin from Look Good Feel Better.

Charity Hack in actionMy original plan was to create a campaign around reducing plate waste in the food service industry and developing a ‘clean your plate’ initiative. Through this campaign I had hoped to encourage restaurants to offer ½ portions, substitution options and doggy bags to take uneaten food home. This plan was thrown out of the water and a new campaign was developed.

After much naval gazing and analysis of what VOICE excelled at and where we needed work, it was determined that we should build on our hugely successful Feeding the 5,000 event that was held last November. What was our new campaign to be?

Mindy’s blog post continues but we’ll let you read the rest of it on VOICE’s website.