Social Hackathon 2016 in Foligno (Italy)

Non-profit associations, hackers and educators involved during the three-day marathon for the development of digital projects.

More than 50 young hackers and different non-profit organisations from all over Italy took part in the Social Umbria Hackathon (website only in Italian) at the Study Center of Foligno last 6-1 July 2016, competing in a digital marathon with the final aim of developing socially useful projects.

The event was an absolute novelty in the Umbrian regional context. Supported by the Erasmus+ programme, within the framework of the Generation0101 project, as well as by the eSkills for Jobs campaign, the Digital Agenda of the Umbria Region and the Municipality of Foligno, #SHU2016 offered excellent learning and networking opportunities to youths from Italy and abroad.

The event has involved hackers, who have previously attended free courses at the Association Study Centre City of Foligno, aimed at increasing their digital skills and test them with the participation at the Hackathon, where not only Italian youths were involved, but also international participants from Turkey, Croatia and Cyprus.

The Hackathon focused on the development of digital solutions to the needs and social challanges of six non-profit associations, select among 17 that applied with the National call for Local organisations.

The projects, all equally attractive and competitive, have been proposed by the following associations: Sementera Onlus, Fuoririga, ArchiPet, Fuseum, Parliament Watch Italy, Messina Community Foundation.

Sementera, an association dedicated to the rehabilitation of people with mental disorders, developed a fantasy chat for teens affected by the so-called ‘Hikikomori’ syndrome. 

Fuoririga, an organization aimed at the rehabilitation and social reintegration of disaffected youths in Rome, has proposed a project to strengthen  the rights of communication with the outside world in juvenile prisons, developing "a network of freedom... in prison and reality. "

The Sicilian boys from Messina Community Foundation have been working on an Mobile App for the dynamic branding of responsible territories, continuing their intent to social promotion in a context of continuous decline.

The Eco-Park of contemporary art Fuseum, based in Perugia and established to promote and protect cultural and artistic heritage, designed an App for Contemporary art multimedia tour.

Archipet, an association that deals with pet therapy, has asked its development team a dynamic website for the project called "Story telling & Pet Therapy... healing and caring become synonyms".

Finally, Parliment Watch, a non-profit organisation that promotes open government and the civic monitoring at the local level, has proposed a civic media for transparency and dialogue between voters and elected officials.

In addition to the contest of the six different development projects, #SHU2016 proposed a series of side-events disclosing at the Study Center of Foligno.

On the 6th of July, the Social Computing exhibition was presented, which brought the artist's role within the social network and media.

From the 7th to the 9th of July, a Digital BarCamp seminar took place, dedicated to all those involved in social activities, proposing ideas to share and develop. It was a "non-laboratory" of Web Design inside the Hackathon.

Another side event was Quintana 3D. The workshop was jointly organized by the Centro Studi di Foligno, the General Quarter of Quintana Festival and the national Association Stati Generali dell’Innovazione. The use of augmented reality for the promotion of intangible cultural heritage was shown to local students.

Friday the 8th of July a Laboratory on expressive writing and digital arts has been organized by the National Center for Rare Diseases, National Institute of Health, in collaboration with non-profit associations and at the presence of Maria Rita Parsi, a member of the Committee on the Rights of the Child at the United Nations.

Saturday morning was devoted to the presentation of the digital topics of the Local 'Urban agenda’. Foligno, was envisaged as a Smart Community with the participation of local companies and citizens.

In the afternoon, a ‘CoderDojo’ took place, an event developed by a group of volunteers that aims to introduce children to the world of digital programming. Through digital software children used the mouse to program movements and sounds in the virtual environment.

Simultaneously to the CoderDojo there was a seminar presented by ‘Libre Italia’ for parents, teachers and educators; focused on the conscious use of network and digital freedom.

The multicultural and dynamic event of the Social Hackathon Umbria 2016 ended on July 10, with the final presentation of the projects developed through the collaboration of hackers and associations.

After the verdict of an expert jury, and a fatastic brunch to celebrate the end of the event, the team that developed the chatbot "Drago Mamoru" (Sementera) was awarded.

Thanks to the success of this first edition, we have already anticipated that there will be a Social Hackathon Umbria 2017... where you will be all invited to participate.

The Magazine of the event, published by the Media Coverage Team (only in Italian)