Google’s $2M Aussie NFP Challenge
1 July 2014 at 11:01 am
Global online technology giant Google is offering Australian Not for Profits a share in $2 million in grants to turn their technology-driven ideas into reality.
Google’s Impact Challenge Australia will offer the four winning submissions mentoring and technical support from Google employees and $AU500,000 grant funding to help bring their project to life.
Applications are open for Not for Profits with DGR status who can apply online at g.co/australiachallenge.
Google says it will announce 10 finalists in October. Australians will then be invited to learn more about the top 10 finalists and cast a vote for their favourite.
“From conceiving the Hills Hoist to inventing the bionic ear and WiFi, Australia has a rich history of innovation, fuelled by a desire to tackle tough problems with creative solutions,” Google Australia Managing Director Maile Carnegie said.
“We believe technology can help solve some of the world’s most pressing challenges, and we’re eager to back Australian innovators in the non-profit sector who are using technology to make an impact.”
“We want Not for Profits to look at their causes through a technological lense. Often they are very focused on solving problems and coming up with better solutions for a cause but often don’t look at computer science and software,” Google Australia Director of Engineering, Alan Noble, said.
“We’re asking them to take a step back and look at how technology can help achieve a bigger impact. We really want all our applicants to think big.”
Noble said projects would be judged on impact, innovation, scalability and feasibility.
“Part of that feasibility is that if they don’t have the technological capabilities in-house they need to identify partners to assist in their project,” he said.
Other Google Impact Challenges around the world have supported ideas ranging from smart cameras for wildlife conservation to solar lights for off-grid communities to a mobile application that helps to protect women from domestic violence.
The Google Impact Challenge Australia judging panel is made up of cricketer Glenn McGrath, media executive Kim Williams and photographer Anne Geddes.
Representing Google are Maile Carnegie and Jacquelline Fuller who runs Google.org.
"From the online delivery of mental health services to emerging areas like teledentistry, many innovative Australian non-profits are already using technology to increase their social impact,” Jacquelline Fuller said.
“We're bringing the Google Impact Challenge to Australia to shine a light on the best ideas, and offer an embedded Google team and grant funding to help develop four stand out projects."
Google says the judging panel will select three awardees and the fourth will be decided based on online votes from the public.
Applications close on July 29.