Google Announces $23M “Global Impact Awards” Program To Kickstart Nonprofit Tech Innovation

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Today, Google announced a new program called the “Global Impact Awards” to help jumpstart technology innovation in the nonprofit sector, an area that surely needs a kickstart.

Google also said it has given more than $100 million in grants, $1 billion in technology and 50K hours of volunteer time from its employees. If every company gave back like this, it would be a a better planet. This isn’t a time to be a cynic. This is real and true.

Here’s what Jacquelline Fuller, Director of Giving at Google (awesome title), had to say about it:

Today we’re launching the Global Impact Awards to support organizations using technology and innovative approaches to tackle some of the toughest human challenges. From real-time sensors that monitor clean water to DNA barcoding that stops wildlife trafficking, our first round of awards provides $23 million to seven organizations changing the world.

With the type of clout that Google has in the tech space, and the world of innovation, this is an extremely important move for nonprofits to pay attention to. Basically, if Google can “put its money where its mouth is”, amazing world-changing things can happen.

Here are the seven nonprofits that will benefit from the program:

  1. charity: water: Real-time technology to monitor water and ensure it gets to more people
  2. Consortium for the Barcode of Life: DNA barcoding to identify and protect endangered wildlife
  3. DonorsChoose.org: New program to enroll more underrepresented students in advanced classes
  4. Equal Opportunity Schools: Data to identify high-performing yet underrepresented students
  5. Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media: Tools to analyze and promote gender equality in media
  6. GiveDirectly: Mobile technology to put money directly into the hands of the poor
  7. World Wildlife Fund: New technologies to advance anti-poaching efforts

This program fits in nicely with what Google has done with Google.org, the philanthropic arm of the company, which includes projects like Crisis Maps for use when natural disasters are about to hit.

This all follows a slow trend of large companies “giving back” to the world in which they inhabit and benefit from. You can find more details about the program and the benefiting nonprofits at the Global Impact Awards site.