“No Code” Hackathon for Social Change Attracts Diverse Talent, Embracing Equity and Justice

ARISE Community Health Improvement Leadership Academy members work together in Champaign, IL

Photo by Somava Saha, ARISE Community Health Improvement Leadership Academy, Champaign, IL

ST. LOUIS, March 19, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- WE WIN Together Week is proud to announce the inaugural "'No Code' Hackathon for Social Change," scheduled virtually from April 1-21, 2024, with an onsite option for teams in St. Louis during the homestretch of April 20 and 21. Hosted by WIN Network, Communities RISE Together, Well-being and Equity in the World, and Harris-Stowe State University, this groundbreaking event will harness the collective creativity of diverse teams to address systemic injustices prevalent in communities across the US and globally.

Steven Ketchpel, Director of Community Technology Operations and Innovation at WE in the World, expressed great enthusiasm, sharing, “We're excited to have fresh ideas from the hackathon teams–they come at a critical time as we kick off our next phase of project development. The event itself should be a lot of fun, with talks from industry and nonprofit leaders, and a chance to meet other socially motivated people, whether virtually or in St. Louis."

Hackathon participants will work together to prototype ideas that champion changemakers and rectify the systemic inequalities perpetuated by barriers such as racism, sexism, classism, and caste. Their projects will spotlight issues, propose solutions, and mobilize movements for transformative change.

Drew Martin, Director of Networks and Partnerships at WE in the World, emphasized the event's significance: “The hackathon not only offers participants the chance to compete for cash prizes, but more importantly, community members have the opportunity to forge lifelong connections and contribute to impactful projects with far-reaching societal implications. We are especially excited to have lots of youth actively involved in this hackathon!"

The "No Code" Hackathon welcomes individuals from diverse backgrounds; no coding expertise required. By leveraging publicly available tools and datasets, participants will have the opportunity to innovate and collaborate across various disciplines.

A series of speakers during the week of April 8-12 will provide valuable insights and guidance to support participants in their journey toward social change.

“We believe that true innovation thrives on diversity and inclusivity," shared Christian Pearson, CEO at Easter Egg Labs. "Whether you're a data scientist, urban planner, poet, youth organizer, community member, or someone with lived experiences of inequity, your perspective is invaluable in crafting solutions that embrace and advance equity and justice.”

Participants can register as pre-formed teams or join forces with like-minded individuals during the virtual team mixer on April 6, 2024. Additionally, the hackathon will be complemented by "WE WIN Together" sessions April 22-24, where changemakers will convene to discuss strategies for building a better future.

Focused on tackling structural racism and inequities, the hackathon will explore various areas, including healthcare, education, social services, transportation, and beyond.

"We envision this hackathon as a way to engage our community in creating meaningful change," added Megan Wanzo, Adjunct Professor in the Albert Gnaegi Center for Health Care Ethics at Saint Louis University. "Through collaboration and innovation, we will create a more equitable and just society for all.”

The hackathon will feature a distinguished judging panel comprising industry experts, innovators, and domain specialists, who will provide valuable feedback and insights to participants. Winners will be announced on April 22, with winning teams having the opportunity to present their projects to attendees of the "WE WIN Together" gathering later in the week.

For those interested in onsite participation, limited spots are available at Harris-Stowe University in St. Louis, MO. To explore sponsorship opportunities, contact Drew Martin at Andrew.Martin@weintheworld.org.

For more information and registration, visit www.winnetwork.org/hackathon-for-social-change-wwtw-2024

About the Organizations:

Harris-Stowe State University, located in St. Louis, Missouri, with a statewide mission in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) for underrepresented and under-resourced students, offers baccalaureate and select master’s degrees to address the higher education needs of the metropolitan St. Louis region. Harris-Stowe is designated as one of two Historically Black College and Universities (HBCUs) in Missouri and serves African-Americans and other diverse student populations throughout the state.

The Well Being In the Nation (WIN) Network is a growing strategic network working together to advance intergenerational well-being and equity.

Communities RISE (Reach, Immunizations, System Change for Equity, RISE) Together is an alliance of partners connected to 2,400+ organizations across the nation who are deeply rooted in communities, and have deep trust with Black, Native-American, Latinx, Asian-American/Pacific-Islander, immigrant/migrant, and low-income older adult populations.

Well-being and Equity (WE) in the World is a multiracial community of well-being and equity architects, building the social and vital conditions we all need to thrive on a foundation of racial and economic justice. The organization serves as the implementation team for the WIN Network and Communities RISE Together.

Partners co-hosting WE WIN Together Week include the Center for Popular Democracy, chromatic.black, the Illinois Department of Public Health, Latino Health Access, Migrant Clinicians Network, National Councils on Aging, National Indian Health Board, Public Health Institute, and WE in the World.

Media Contact:
Shonda Smith | Director of Communications | Well-being and Equity in the World
1.833.936.9753 (Dial ext. #722)

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at https://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/6a974861-e454-4ecf-914f-b58a52a1f0b8