Month: September 2021

Reciprocity

When I have a chance to connect with friends and family they ask: “What are you up to?”

The answer to that question for me lately is building a company called Reciprocity.

My co-founders Cam Underdown, Josh Linneburg and I started Reciprocity a year ago, after co-founding a nonprofit disaster response network at MyCovidResponse.

Here are a few links that describe our accomplishments and milestones so far:

During the early days of the Pandemic our goal was simply to put all hands on deck to help as many people as possible.

We discovered a few insights along the way:

  1. Nonprofits & Service Organizations have not see much innovation since the 1980’s.
  2. Data gathering + management is often a burden for these organizations, not a tool.
  3. Reporting requirements have increased, shifting a greater administrative burden onto nonprofits.
  4. The Leaders of these organizations know about all the problems and are doing the best they can with what they have.
  5. Data silos exist within each organization, and between different organizations.
  6. People are unaware of all the resources they can take advantage of.
  7. When you put nonprofit programs online, they scale more like tech companies and less like nonprofits.
  8. There are many lifetimes of work ahead of us to make community, nonprofit, faith organization and local government resources available to those in need.

We seem to have stumbled upon a much larger problem space — so we founded Reciprocity to help nonprofits to amplify their reach using technology.

We eat our own cooking too. The tools that we build for other organizations are tools that we wish we had, but that simply did not exist during our experience building for COVID-19 relief projects.

I love working with my Co-Founders Cam & Josh. Something special happened when all of us started working together. Somehow, 1+1+1 = 10.

Now we are happily building a bootstrapped company that’s on a mission to connect people in need with resources, while also empowering the nonprofits and service organizations who are there to help.

If any of the above was interesting to you, we are actively seeking collaborators, clients, advisors, and partners. Please visit www.reciprocityapps.org/schedule to set up a time to talk with me.

Special thanks are in order for thousands of people who helped to make everything possible. I was honored and inspired by all of the people listed below, and more. Thanks to Jen Lucarelli, Dustin McClellan, Russ Russell, Anisah Hashmi, Bree Namukowa, Joshika Money, Kelly Rohner, Mike Carnill, Dave McKinney, Emily Tissot, Theresa Krell, Elizabeth Onye, Amarachi Wachuku, Olivia Melosi, Kimber Bishop-Yankee, Beth O’Rorke, Chris Saitek, Angela Gill, Charla Burnett, and many more!

Climate Codex

I stumbled upon this amazing resource from Pioneer.

It’s the most dense and useful, context rich resource for a new founder to come up to speed on Startup mechanics that I have ever seen. I learned so much by reading all these links from start to finish.

I’d like to make the same for those who are interested in joining the fight against climate change.

If you are interested in joining me in assembling something like this, please join me.

Learning to Code

I’m finally learning how to code after realizing the number and variety of things that I can create.

I do have some programming experience — when I was in highschool I built computers and occasionally had to hack around in the bios to increase the clock speed on my CPU to get better performance while playing games. I used a plain text editor to write and run scripts in FORTRAN for a Summer undergraduate research project in molecular modeling, and then did some PLC logic programming for my electro-mechanical systems classes. Those environments were so painful to work in that I blocked it out of my memory.

I always found programming to be impenetrably boring to learn, and then I started Reciprocity with my co-founders Cam and Josh. Once I saw that writing programs can be a way to help people in the real world do what they want, I became a lot more interested.

The pain of learning to code is somehow less than the pain of having to do routine paperwork over and over again.

So I’m finally learning. If you have any suggested resources or tips for a beginner, let me know!

Having computers work for us day and night is preferable.

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