Techies in Residence

Techies In Residence Exhibition

A programme for Digital Social Innovation

Techies in Residence (TiR) has supported over 25 groups since its inception and is focused on creating powerful change within communities through digital technology.

Applications now open for techies!

We believe that digital technology holds huge potential to help the VCSE sector develop new innovative solutions to address community challenges and issues. This has become even more evident in light of the outbreak of COVID 19 with many organisations grappling with the shift to digital working – and how best to respond to it.

Techies in Residence is aimed at supporting VCSE organisations to explore digital innovation solutions to challenges they are trying to address. The programme adopts a design thinking approach bringing together social challenges from VCSE organisations with digital technology professionals to design, develop and test innovative digital products and services that have the potential for deep social impact.

 

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How the Programme works

TiR Planning

Programme Timeline

The programme application process is broken down into 3 phases:

1. Online Design Hops/Information Sessions 

The Design Hops have now taken place. You can find out more about the Techies in Residence programme by getting in touch with our Innovation and Voice Team below.

2. The Idea Refinement and Selection Process
There are three stages to this process which will result in the progression of a VCSE organisation bringing forward a suitably defined idea selected to the Techies in Residence programme.

Stage one – VCSE organisations are invited to submit a written application outlining the social challenge they want to address.
Stage two – Shortlisted applicants will then be invited to an application refinement workshop, where they will be supported to receive feedback, refine and resubmit their application.
Stage three – Successful applicants of stage one will be invited to ‘Pitch’ their idea for a place on the Programme. Pitch training will be available on 7th October 2020 and the ‘Pitch event’ will take place on the 15th October 2020.

3. The TIR Programme
Following securing a place on the programme, the Foundation will match the selected VCSE and challenge with an appropriate ‘techie’. The TiR programme will take place between December 2020 and May 2021. The programme has three phases: Design, Develop and Test.

 

Design: When matched, the techies and VCSEs will participate in a 2 day ‘Residential’ on Wed 9th and Thurs 10th December 2020, where they will experience explore possible tech solutions to the identified challenge and centre the final idea on the experience and insight of the user.

Develop: The 12 week ‘residency’ will see the paired groups work closely together to produce a working prototype of their product, platform or service. During this period the different projects will receive expert mentoring, guidance and advice on project design, development and testing of their idea. The 12 week ‘residency’ will take place from January to March 2021

Test: A showcasing event will provide an opportunity for TiR participants to showcase their achievements to one another. Participants of TiR 2020 will also have the opportunity to pitch for a Seed Fund award which will allow them to undertake further development and scaling up of their product, platform or service. 

 

We have prepared a handy infographic showing the expected TiR Timeline:
TiR Timeline Graphic Thumbnail

 

Key Dates

Applications:

28th July 2020 – Applications Open
10th September 2020 – Applications Close
24th September – Application Refinement Workshop

Pitch your proposal:

7th October 2020 – Pitch Prep Workshop
15th October 2020 – Pitch Event

Open Call For Techies:

October – December 2020

Residential:

9th – 10th December 2020

 

CAST logo

Our Partnership with CAST

New to the programme this year is our partnership with  CAST – Centre For Acceleration of Social Technology who organised online ‘Design Hop’ events.

CAST will also provide specialist support and training to VCSE and techies during the delivery of TiR.

 

Who can apply

Any VCSE (voluntary, community or social enterprise) organisation registered or operating in Northern Ireland can apply.

Download Techies in Residence Guidelines

 

Note to applicants

Before making an application for TiR, VCSEs should consider the time and commitment required to participate fully in this programme.

If successful in securing a place on this programme, attendance at the residential is compulsory. The residential will take place on Wednesday 9th and Thursday 10th December. The 12-week‘ residency’ will take place from January to March 2021.

Please note that TiR adopts an ‘open innovation’ approach, which centres on the belief that any new solution could have multiple applications beyond the immediate problem for which it was developed.

This is particularly important in the resource-constrained environment of the VCSE sector. There is little sense in investing multiple times in the development of broadly similar solutions. The Foundation asks that all TiR participants adopt an open approach to intellectual property and are prepared to make the software element of their solution freely available to others working on social challenges.

​For more information on this programme, contact our Innovation and Voice team:
Paul Braithwaite, Head of Innovation and Voice  – pbraithwaite@communityfoundationni.org
Gemma McCaughley, Programme Officer – gmccaughley@communityfoundationni.org

 

This programme is funded by Comic Relief.

Comic Relief logo

Call for Techies now open!

Apply Now

Express your interest

Expressions of interest for Tech companies is now open.

Apply Here

Techies in Residence 2017-2019

The Impact of TiR

Funded by Comic Relief six groups completed the programme last year and competed for a share of a £25,000 Bank of Ireland seed fund to progress their prototype to the next stage.

PPR (Participation & the Practise of Rights) one of the successful groups was awarded £5,000 to develop their ‘Housing Rights Watch” app. The app allows members of the public to directly apply to the Housing Executive Chief Executive for official homeless status, utilising their formal complaints process and has been developed in response to an increasing volume of homeless people who are without official Full Duty Applicant Status.


Techies in Residence 2017-2019

The Impact of TiR

Funded by Comic Relief six groups completed the programme last year and competed for a share of a £25,000 Bank of Ireland seed fund to progress their prototype to the next stage.

PPR (Participation & the Practise of Rights) one of the successful groups was awarded £5,000 to develop their ‘Housing Rights Watch” app. The app allows members of the public to directly apply to the Housing Executive Chief Executive for official homeless status, utilising their formal complaints process and has been developed in response to an increasing volume of homeless people who are without official Full Duty Applicant Status.


Who to speak to

Community Foundation Logo

Innovation & Voice Team

For more information on this programme, contact our Innovation and Voice team:

Paul Braithwaite, Head of Innovation and Voice – pbraithwaite@communityfoundationni.org
Gemma McCaughley, Programme Officer – gmccaughley@communityfoundationni.org

Community Foundation Logo

Innovation & Voice Team

For more information on this programme, contact our Innovation and Voice team:

Paul Braithwaite, Head of Innovation and Voice – pbraithwaite@communityfoundationni.org
Gemma McCaughley, Programme Officer – gmccaughley@communityfoundationni.org

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