Last 10 December 2016, TechSoup Asia-Pacific & Microsoft Singapore organized another successful Technology for Good half-day conference at the Enabling Village in Lengkok Bahru, Singapore. Attended by over 45 unique local charities, the conference’s purpose was reflected already by its venue’s name – that is to enable.
In seeking to enable the local charities in attendance, TechSoup Asia-Pacific and Microsoft Singapore prepared an entire morning that allowed non-profits to learn and connect with technology experts and non-profits alike. Throughout the morning, all of whom shared their own experiences and journeys on how they took to technology as they sought to create a bigger impact in their own communities.
Stories of empowerment
Unlike most technology events, Technology for Good was centred on a unique premise; the stories of non-profits. This was most evident in the opening sessions lead by Aude Breteau & Borko Kovacevic of Microsoft Singapore, along with Jed Adao of TechSoup Asia-Pacific.
Starting off on a high note, Microsoft Singapore’s Philanthropies Lead, Aude Breteau began by welcoming all non-profits in attendance and inviting them to take the event as an opportunity to realize their own digital transformation.
This was followed by TechSoup Asia-Pacific’s Jed Adao who talked about the story of SCA Philippines and how they overcame their limitations in manpower through researching and implementing Office 365 donations on their own, thus allowing them to empower more youth in the Philippines regardless of only having 3 members.
Lastly, the morning sessions were capped off by Borko by delivering a live demonstration of the collaboration tools mentioned in the prior story – such as Outlook, Skype for Business & co-authoring in SharePoint - along with a discussion on how each of these can assist in creating a more efficient workflow in the office.
Dwelling on data
Adding to the unique approach of the conference, Technology for Good also sought to dwell on a topic that is rarely talked about but is just as important; data management for non-profits. In response to this, the conference’s second part was focused on talks and stories on how proper data management can be achieved and can be used to the benefit of non-profits and the communities they are serving.
Throughout the second half of the program, Shania from Microsoft Singapore along with Chieh Sze of Costumer Capital Consulting and Oliver from DataKind Singapore, all shared about the non-profits they have worked with and how proper data management and reporting led to better tracking of their impact. In addition to that, Chieh Sze also stressed how a properly managed database of funders and volunteers can allow for more effective fundraising campaigns.
Finally, capping of the second half of the program, Arjun from Microsoft Singapore dwelled on how data can also be utilized in tailor-fitting programs to the communities you are serving. Talking about the case of the Missing Children Society in Canda, Arjun depicts how a non-profit has successfully developed their own custom program that allows them to tap into social media to assist in finding children that have been reported missing. This in itself was an initiative developed as a response to the growing issue of missing children in the community.
More to come
This half-day conference is part of a larger initiative of Microsoft Singapore and TechSoup Asia-Pacific. In the coming months, TechSoup Asia-Pacific will be coming back to Singapore, this time to host a series of half-day trainings with Microsoft Singapore.
The upcoming half-day trainings will focus on giving local non-profits a guided experience on utilizing Microsoft Cloud Donations in order to help them work collaboratively, optimize communications, properly manage data and many more. As a follow-up to that as well, a free webinar will also be held to serve as a venue for non-profits to clarify questions that they may have on these topics. These follow-up initiatives will take place on February to March of 2017.