AWS Public Sector Blog

IMAGINE: A Better World, A Global Nonprofit Conference – the 2019 recap

IMAGINE: A Better World, A Global Nonprofit Conference brought together hundreds of nonprofits from around the world dedicated to tackling the growing challenges our world faces every day. From fighting climate change to finding cures to saving animals, nonprofits are seeking new ways to combine their passion and purpose with technology. Through the two days of keynotes, sessions, and networking opportunities, attendees uncovered opportunities to collaborate to make the world a better place.

Read on below for the top ten highlights coming out of the conference:

Best Friends Animal Society Goes All-In on AWS

Best Friends Animal Society, a leading national animal welfare organization dedicated to ending the killing of dogs and cats in America’s shelters, is going all-in on AWS as its standard for machine learning workloads. Using AWS’s unmatched portfolio of services to build new technology-driven initiatives, Best Friends will help to further their goal to end the killing of dogs and cats in U.S. shelters by 2025. AWS database, serverless, machine learning, and analytics capabilities are being used to run all operations while enhancing the adoption experience and managing on-demand animal transportation opportunities for pets at risk of euthanasia in overcrowded shelters. Read the blog.

Think Stack Added to the APN Nonprofit Competency Program

Last year at IMAGINE, we announced the launch of the AWS Nonprofit Competency program. This competency distinguishes our top technology and consulting partners dedicated, experienced, and qualified to support the unique missions of the nonprofit organizations they serve. With the help of AWS Nonprofit Competency Partners, customers can quickly, cost-efficiently, and securely leverage technology to scale mission impact and drive social change. Our community of Nonprofit Competency Partners is growing with the latest addition – Think Stack.

Calling all Nonprofits with Technology-Driven Projects – Apply for an AWS Imagine Grant 

We are now accepting applications for the 2019 AWS Imagine Grant Program from eligible 501(c) nonprofit organizations in the United States. New this year, organizations have the opportunity to receive up to $100,000 in unrestricted funding and up to $100,000 in AWS Promotional Credits, in addition to other capacity-building resources, including AWS training and implementation support. As part of the program, we are seeking proposals for pilot projects, proof of concepts, strategic technology planning, or existing programs that use technology in a new or expanded way. To help get an idea of what is possible for nonprofits using AWS, review some of our nonprofit success stories and read the descriptions of past winning projects. Learn more.

Movember Expands their Mission to Enable the Gift of Time 

Focusing on mental health as well as prostate and testicular cancer, the Movember foundation does more than raise funds to combat these diseases — it seeks to educate and assist men in pursuit of living healthier lives. Through identifying family history and discovering ethnicity patterns, the Movember Foundation has made vast strides in providing tailored care for men across the world. With goals to eradicate prostate and testicular cancer by 50% and drop the male suicide rate by 25% all by 2030, the foundation has immersed themselves in a culture of innovation. By dedicating themselves to the problem, and thinking of the solution as the second step, the foundation has been able to ensure they are creating useful resources for the people who need it. Learn more here.

Amazon Disaster Response in Action 

From rebuilding connectivity through AWS to delivering essentials through Amazon’s logistics network, attendees met to learn about Amazon’s approach to disaster relief spanning the entire company. Through the AWS Disaster Response program, customers can focus on mission-critical functions, while AWS provisions critical data and applications, transports hardware to the base of operations, and implements deployable infrastructure based on customer need. Learn more about how AWS enhances our customers’ disaster response capabilities.

Delta Airlines and the Fight Against Human Trafficking 

Through Delta Airline’s #GetOnBoard: A Widespread Commitment campaign, they have emerged as a leader in the fight against human trafficking. Delta has educated over 66 thousand employees to spot and report human trafficking, as well as encouraged over 500 employees to become global ambassadors. However, their support to eradicate this epidemic doesn’t stop there. Delta helps victims re-socialize themselves in the workforce by placing them in an array of jobs within the company.

Join the Community that’s Cleaning the Planet 

In the kick off to day two, Jeff Kirschner, the founder of Litterati, shared how he developed the idea to leverage crowd sourcing and a social media mindset to clean and save our plant. The Litterati app collects data to help businesses and communities identify the root of the problem and drive change. His story showed the power of what happens when individuals join forces for a greater good. What started with two kids in Northern California is now the Litterari community in 115 countries. “Data and technology can lead to an insight that results in a positive impact,” said Jeff.

Working Backwards Workshop 

At Amazon, we start with the customer and work backwards. During the workshop led by the AWS Cloud Innovation Center (CIC) team, attendees began the Working Backwards process by answering five customer questions – Who is the customer? what is the customer problem or opportunity? What is the most important customer benefit? How do you know what the customers need or want? What does the customer experience look like? These questions helped clarify thinking before attendees develop their next big idea.

Promoting Sustainability Innovation through Open Data 

The Amazon Sustainability Data Initiative to promote sustainability research, innovation, and problem-solving by making key data easily accessible and even more widely available. The Amazon Sustainability Data Initiative leverages AWS technology and scalable infrastructure to stage, analyze, and distribute data, and is a joint effort between the AWS Open Data and Amazon Sustainability teams.

Reimagining Healthcare 

The healthcare roundtable convened healthcare-focused nonprofits to discuss shared challenges and opportunities in leveraging cloud technology to advance research outcomes. During the roundtable, attendees discussed the advancement of healthcare research, data sharing across their communities, and patient services with the goal of improving lives and reducing time to treatment and cures.

Learn more about AWS for nonprofits here and see more videos of our customers from the event.