dsmHack 2022

The hack is complete! Catch the livestream recordings of the opening and closing ceremonies and keep reading to learn how we helped 6 great nonprofits this year.

Meet your 2022 nonprofits

EMBARC is a grassroots organization founded by refugees from Burma with the mission to help refugees expand their world of possibilities through advocacy, education & community development. EMBARC’s vision is that refugee families and communities thrive in Iowa.

Their hackathon team created Community Storytellers, a web-based application that EMBARC will use to show and tell the stories of those they’ve impacted through an engaging interactive map. The stories and content presented can be easily managed by the EMBARC team through a content management system.

EveryStepWhen people face life’s most difficult moments, we are with them, at EveryStep. Amanda the Panda-Grief and Loss Services program offers free support to individuals following the death of a loved one. Activities include camps, peer support groups, social gatherings, school support groups and community events.

Their hackathon team built a series of automation tools to allow EveryStep staff to manage and control the Cheer Box production process. The automation handles stakeholder communications automatically, performs distributed status updates from delivery volunteers, and stream lines data ingestion into their master task list, for easy consolidation of information. The tools also provide various views of their data, showing relevant and interesting states of Cheer Boxes. They can quickly see where any given Cheer Box is in the process, see which ones are stuck, and also which ones have fallen outside of delivery guidelines, so those volunteers can be followed up with.

Forest Ave Community Orchard – Building a community one seed at a time. Forest Ave Community Orchard runs a community orchard and two community gardens. They also provide paid internships to teens. They focus on workforce development, food insecurity in an underserved communities, and building strong communities in Des Moines.

Their hackathon team revitalized the organization’s website, moving them to Squarespace and integrating with social media accounts, mailing systems, and other services being used by Forest Avenue Outreach. The site makes the org visible again, to volunteers, funders, and the community.

Raise the Bar Initiative‘s mission is to educate and provide opportunities for every woman to develop strength. We do this by teaching girls and women how to develop physical strength through weightlifting, which helps create greater mental and emotional strength.

Their hackathon team took on the challenge of making participant and volunteer tracking more effective at showing the impact that Raise The Bar was really having on the community. The team picked WordPress to align with the organizations future tech plan, and developed a data storage approach that can scale. They went on to implement user profiles so volunteers and participants can view their own involvement, and developed database queries that empower Raise The Bar to analyze and report on their impact.

Taste of the Junction celebrates the people, cultures, and cuisines of Historic Valley Junction. Vision is to celebrate, honor, and preserve the culture and cuisines of the people that immigrated and migrated to the Valley Junction West Des Moines community through several venues and desires to do more.

Their hackathon team translated their physical pop up museum exhibit into a virtual museum for visitors to enjoy and explore year round. They also provided a full website rebuild and implemented the ability to share family stories, publish digital commemorative booklets, and highlight events to continue celebrating the people, cultures, and cuisines of Historic Valley Junction at a global scale. The updated website at tasteofthejunction.org is coming soon!

The Directors Council is a coalition of Black CEOs and Executive Directors dedicated to improving the conditions of the individuals in the communities they serve. We pool our collective expertise to develop programs and launch unique initiatives that meet unaddressed needs.

Their team helped create Black Homeownership DSM (going live in July), a new  resource guide that will provide prospective Black homeowners an ethical, trusted resource to navigate support and assistance to realize their dream of owning a home. The site will be managed by The Directors Council and will be managed with support by a team of housing experts convened as part of the One Economy project. 

Thank you to our sponsors!

We couldn’t put on this event without the amazing support of our sponsors, some who have been with us year after year after year.