The PresenTense Community Hackathon is designed to utilize PresenTense’s unique methodologies to promote collaboration within mid-sized Jewish communities in North America and initiate new solutions centered around Jewish education and engagement. Three communities will be selected in the inaugural year. The host institution in each community will receive training, in-kind support and $15,000 in funding to execute the program and seed new ideas.
PresenTense Group and The Covenant Foundation are excited to announce a new program offering in North America, The PresenTense Community Hackathon, in celebration of the Covenant Foundation’s upcoming 25th anniversary.
In recent years PresenTense has modified its model to address key issue areas and target new populations, including a highly successful daylong community Hackathon in New York. The Covenant Foundation is a leading supporter of innovative approaches to Jewish education, identifying, supporting and scaling models within communities across North America.
The PresenTense Community Hackathon is designed to utilize PresenTense’s unique methodologies to promote collaboration within mid-sized Jewish communities in North America and initiate new solutions centered around Jewish education and engagement. Participating communities in the inaugural year will receive training, in-kind support and $15,000 in funding to execute the program and seed new ideas.
Applications for the 2016-2017 Community Hackathons are now closed. Stayed tuned for information on the next phase of this program!
Following a three-month application and selection process, the three communities will commit to a yearlong program, as detailed below:
What You Need To Know
May – June 2016
Application and Selection
Community institutions apply through an intake form followed by an online application, and three are selected by June 30, 2016. Local coordinator is identified by August 15, 2016.
September – November 2016
Training for Coordinator and Institution
PresenTense facilitates in-person two-day joint training for the three communities and regular support to each city thereafter.
December 2016 – January 2017
Institution convenes key local players to participate in Design Thinking-focused process, facilitated by PresenTense, to identify local challenge and conduct empathy interviews.
February – March 2017
Marketing and Advertising for Local Hacakthon
PresenTense provides collateral; institution develops marketing plan and disseminates information.
April – May 2017
Communities Facilitate Hackathon
The Hackathon methodology consists of two days: an open forum to pitch ideas, followed by workshops on Design Thinking and structured lab time geared toward rapidly generating, prototyping, and developing solutions. At the conclusion of the event, participants will pitch and demonstrate their final prototypes. Three teams or individuals will be selected as winners for their ideas to proceed to the acceleration phase.
June – August 2017
Idea Acceleration Phase
PresenTense facilitates idea acceleration phase for top 3 ideas from each city including virtual training, mentorship, and seed funding.
Community Innovators Submit Final Deliverables to PresenTense
Ideas Showcase – Covenant Foundation 25th Anniversary Celebration
October – December 2017
Evaluation; Plan for Phase 2
Commitment from PresenTense to each city
- Full program methodology, playbook, training, and materials (turnkey model) to develop and launch the program
- 1-2 site visits from PresenTense staff/trainers to support process and help facilitate the Design Thinking gathering as well as the Hackathon
- Regular Coordinator support and national coordinator calls
- Funding: $7,500 in seed funding to each city ($2,500 per innovator or team)
- Up to $7,500 in funding to cover 3 events in each city (community gathering, Hackathon, and Speed Mentoring)
Commitment from community institution to PresenTense and the Covenant Foundation
- Sign an agreement to participate in and manage year-long process
- Identify a Coordinator to manage process. If Coordinator leaves for any reason, institution finds a replacement
- Coordinator attends in-person training (likely NYC) in fall 2016, and can be joined by other staff or lay leaders
- In addition to executing the year-long process, Institution commits to leveraging or creating organizational mechanisms to integrate new ideas into Institution
- Institution pays for coordinator salary, travel costs to training, and any direct program costs incurred outside of funding granted from the Covenant Foundation
Based on their collective experience and research, PresenTense and the Covenant Foundation have identified the following success factors they seek within the target communities:
- Midsize Jewish community
- Local institution to house and champion innovation (willing to take risks on testing new ideas and integrating successful solutions into their community)
- Local individual coordinator employed by the host institution who has the ability to convene key players from across the community around a central challenge, plan a large community event, and support a cohort of innovators
- Collaborative nature among local Jewish institutions; openness to achieving consensus around local challenges
- Ability to convene 40+ inter-generational local players/leaders for hackathon
- Local secular entrepreneurial culture to tap into (people, culture, resources)
- Access to potential mentors (businesspeople, entrepreneurs, Jewish professionals/lay leaders)
- Can commit to participate in September 2016 – September 2017 program
Institutions seeking to host the Community Hackathon on behalf of their community and engage other local institutions and leaders in the process. Host institutions can be Federations, JCCs, synagogues, Hillels, museums, day schools or other organizations. Only one institution per chosen city will act as the host institution. We encourage institutions from a given community to collaborate in the application process, and we will also inform multiple institutions from one community if they each applied.
Upon selection the local institution will identify a Coordinator on staff (existing or to be hired) who will manage the process. Estimated commitment: 25% of Coordinator’s time from September 2016 – September 2017. Support from other staff will also be critical.