Tech To The Rescue is a foundation that was created in 2021 to match IT companies with nonprofit organizations. It was established by a coalition of 10+ leading central European tech companies and ourselves, two co-founders who decided to quit our businesses to lead the movement.
So far, TTTR managed to bring over 250 Tech companies together to implement technology solutions for good. After just one year there has been a positive influence on the lives of more than 1,050,000 people in 12 countries. All of this was made in an effort to solve the world’s most pressing social and environmental problems.
How did you come up with the idea for the company?
Tech To The Rescue, started with one person’s genuine need to engage technology companies in a battle against Covid-19. In March 2020, Tomek Karwatka, CEO of Divante, created a simple spreadsheet and shared it within his network with a simple call to action: if you would like to donate your or your team’s time to help fight the Coronavirus – add yourself to the list.
Then, he reached out to his friends in non-governmental organizations and asked them about the technological challenges they are facing in a new reality. Response from both sides was outstanding!
One hundred forty companies from all over the world responded almost immediately. 75% of them donated time of their employees – from 10h to 100h a week. On the other side, over 150 NGOs with their needs in terms of website designs, app solutions and marketing/fundraising advice signed up. We matched nearly 20 projects in a few weeks, but that was only the prelude to what Tech To The Rescue has become in the next months.
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How has the company evolved during the pandemic?
We see the pandemic as a spark that helped to mobilize many companies to do good. We all can remember voluntary donations to the medics or healthcare workers that were on the frontline of the fight against COVID but it did not end there. Seeing how projects are working and what impact they bring to real people’s lives, in July, 2020 we decided to scale this initiative further.
New partners joined, including Ashoka – one of the top social organizations which supports the world’s leading social entrepreneurs. The movement started gaining momentum. At first, we were working part time on the idea, believing that one day our dream can come true – a world where Social Good Organizations have all the resources and technology necessary to solve the most pressing problems. We spent another year on this before we quit our jobs to fully focus on the development of the organisation.
What made it possible was the fact that during the summer of 2021 we managed to secure a seed funding round of €700k that was raised for further efforts to transform the movement into a systemic change of the IT industry –establishing pro-bono engagement as a common sustainability and employee engagement practice. Finally, in December 2021, we got confirmation that officially papers were accepted in the court, and Tech To The Rescue was officially registered as an independent entity!
What can we hope to see from Tech to the Rescue in the future?
As of December 2021, the Tech To The Rescue community includes over 250 IT companies and more than 300 nonprofits, operating in more than 12 countries worldwide, which signed up to use technology to scale up their potential influence. So far the platform has made it possible for more than 50 pro-bono collaborations to happen, addressing real problems with huge potential to make the lives of millions of people better. In 2022 we aim do match over 200 tech companies and non-profits.
Our ultimate goal is to make a systemic shift. Tech industry leaders from Central Europe are showing a great example that it is possible. Building good technology is no longer good enough. Building Technology solutions for good is what can distinguish globally conscious leaders from the rest and build the foundation for a sustainable economy that is not just about making money, but also about making purpose. We believe that being active in initiatives like Tech to the Rescue will become an industry standard and with time market and most importantly – employees! will demand from all successful companies to contribute in some ways to solve the world’s most pressing problems.
We are happy to talk to tech founders that want to be a part of this (r)Evolution!