How Silicon Valley is changing the way we help the homeless

Evan Howard needed to make giving money easy.
He was in charge of fundraising for one of San Francisco’s oldest and best-known community outreach organizations for hunger and homelessness— Glide Memorial Church. For the past decade, receipts from the offering plate and mail drives had been declining.


Code of Honor: New and Old San Francisco Cultures Unite to Solve an Intractable Problem

In December, Greg Gopman, former CEO of AngelHack, infuriated the public and reinforced tech stereotypes of disconnection and entitlement when he posted a rant on his Facebook page:

“Why the heart of our city has to be overrun by crazy, homeless, drug dealers, dropouts, and trash I have no clue… In downtown SF the degenerates gather like hyenas, spit, urinate, taunt you, sell drugs, get rowdy, they act like they own the center of the city… It’s a burden and a liability having them so close to us.”

SF “HACKtivation” Matches Homeless Nonprofits with Tech Talent

While the tech community continues to be demonized across San Francisco, nearly 100 mostly tech workers acted as angels this weekend by donating their expertise to a dozen homeless nonprofit organizations.

In a format similar to a hackathon, where small teams form to develop software programs overnight, ReAllocate’s HACKtivation for the Homeless paired nonprofit organizations with volunteers to address technical challenges that would otherwise be out of reach for the cash-strapped organizations. “Not everybody is being included in how fast things are changing and the benefits of those changes,” said ReAllocate’s Executive Director Kyle Stewart, who cofounded the event with community organizer Ilana Lipsett. “There are opportunities for technology to help inside these established organizations.”

Hackathon Sends Techies to Meet, Greet, Videotape the Homeless

Filmmaker Ken Fisher was preparing about a hundred tech workers to find, talk to and videotape homeless people in the vicinity of the Twitter building in midtown San Francisco.

“For safety’s sake, we should go out in pairs. … Have a discussion guide with you, and rehearse so you don’t need to read off it,” Fisher said to the group about to leave the social giant’s refurbished mid-Market Street office building (they were, specifically, in Yammer’s office space). “Ask before videotaping. That said, I tend to ask forgiveness rather than permission. You usually get good results either way.”

Hacktivation event seeks ways for tech to help S.F. homeless

Technology whizzes, nonprofit workers and others will converge this weekend in San Francisco to try to cook up new tech-savvy ways to help the homeless in a series of get-togethers organizers are calling Hacktivation for the Homeless.

The projects will be fleshed out during sessions planned for Friday, Saturday and Sunday, but for now they include creating an online store for homeless artists to sell their work and handing video cameras out to homeless people and their neighbors to document their everyday lives.

Hacktivation for the Homeless – Preparation

Pre-HacktivationOn March 28th, 29th, and 30th ReAllocate is hosting the next Hacktivation – a purpose-driven hackathon that connects nonprofits and social impact projects with skilled tech volunteers. Hacktivations begin with a series of pitches for projects, followed by a weekend-long push to make them a reality. This time the event will focus on homelessness in San Francisco.

To ensure that the projects can make a real impact ReAllocate is partnering with local nonprofit organizations devoted to serving the homeless. By having these organizations identify the challenges to be addressed, the Hacktivation will focus on real world problems with achievable solutions. This event marks the beginning of a bimonthly series of events facilitating collaboration on social impact projects and ongoing civic participation.


The nonprofits partners have identified a variety of problems and challenges as well as some possible solutions. Projects include capacity building opportunities to help organizations with their internal technology needs, long term technology projects that work between organizations to help address gaps in the current system, and community engagement opportunities to get directly involved with the local community. A full list of projects is available here.

On March 28th local nonprofits will be presenting the projects they need help with and over the course of the next two days participants will be working closely with them to build the solutions they need.  If you have skills that you want to reallocate, sign up and join the Hacktivation!


ReAllocate’s Hacktivation for the Homeless Partners

Caravan StudiosCode for America, Coit GroupCommunity Housing Partnership, Dev BootcampEpiscopal Community Services, GLIDE, GoodwillHandUp, Highground HackersHospitality House, Innovation Alley, Larkin Street Youth ServicesLava Mae, LyftProject Homeless Connect, SF Mayor’s Office of Civic Innovation, Shareable, Social Enterprise Alliance – San Francisco Bay Area ChapterSpotifySt. Anthony FoundationSt. Francis Living RoomTenderloin Housing Clinic, Tenderloin Technology LabYammer, Zenput

Native Art Meets 3D Scanning

March 23, 2013


Anchorage, Alaska: ReAllocate is honored to announce a collaboration between 3D scanning specialists Direct Dimensions and Sugpiaq Alutiiq artist Perry Eaton. Direct Dimensions “ReAllocated” (lent) their technical expertise and state-of-the-art technology to the project, which was preserving and perpetuating Alaska Native culture by digitally scanning Alaskan Native Art and Artifacts. Mr. Eaton commissioned the work to support a show he is participating in this spring at the Orenda Gallery, Paris.


ReAllocate Ambassador David Karabelnikoff, himself a Native Alaskan, introduced Mr. Eaton to ReAllocate and its network of World Class experts after discussing his work one day in his workshop. “Perry is interested in using the latest innovations in technology and design to further his craft,” says Mr. Karabelnikoff, “he understands culture is fluid and not trapped in time and ReAllocate is the perfect partner, leveraging its network to deliver domain-specific expertise around the globe.”


“It is incredibly exciting to bring cutting edge technology together with a cultural expression that has existed for a very long time.  To see how the impact of the masks is enhanced and broadened through the use of 3D scanning and ultimately 3D printing is very fulfilling and is a great example of applying technology in a meaningful manner,” says Timothy Lipton, Co-Founder of ReAllocate.


ReAllocate seeks to empower Alaskans through the implementation of advanced technology to facilitate innovation and sustainable solutions for housing, energy and food.  Selected projects are partnered with experienced mentors who guide them through hands-on training with cutting edge technologies, share expert knowledge of business strategy and provide access to a larger network of professional resources.


About Perry Eaton:

Perry Eaton was born in Kodiak, Alaska. He grew up on his father’s fishing boat and his professional life has covered a wide variety of fields. He has worked as a machinist at Boeing Aircraft Corporation; for three different banks, Seattle First National Bank, The First National Bank of Anchorage and United Bank Alaska; and as community development professional, specializing in rural Alaska. Eaton was the founding President and Chief Executive Officer of Alaska Native Heritage Center. He also served seventeen years as Chief Executive Officer of Alaska Village Initiatives.


Eaton has been appointed by three Governors to variety of directorships including: Alaska Housing Finance Corporation, the Municipal Bond Bank Authority, Alaska Renewable Resources, and The Alaska Science and Technology Foundation.  Eaton is currently the Corporate Relations Manager for Alyeska Pipeline Service Company. He lives in Anchorage, Alaska. Eaton serves as Director Alaska Native Art Foundation Board of Directors.


About Direct DImensions:

Direct Dimensions, Inc. (DDI) provides unique solutions to complex modeling and manufacturing problems. We specialize in the on-site application of digitizers, laser scanners, and the conversion of complex three-dimensional data into 3D computer models.  “Our 3D imaging technology allows us to document complex objects down to the last intricate detail,” explains Michael Raphael, president of Direct Dimensions. “In addition to saving time in the design process, we enable innovators to capture, model, and modify complex physical shapes, such as organic human forms, that would otherwise be impossible to design even with today’s advanced CAD systems.”


About ReAllocate

ReAllocate is a global network of world-class engineers, designers, and entrepreneurs empowering communities through technology and innovation to improve quality of life.  The ReAllocate community currently includes nodes in San Francisco, Alaska, Utah, Tokyo, Haiti, Lithuania and Beirut.  The community creates innovative technological, social and business solutions to self determined needs through collaborative design and prototyping. For more information, please contact:


ReAllocate is Headquartered in TechShopSF at 926 Howard Street, San Francisco CA 94123 To volunteer, donate or learn more, visit  Those interested can also follow the organization on Facebook ( or


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