Inclusive Innovation Community-Building in Central Florida

Aligning the region’s fragmented social sector ecosystem around data by “breaking down silos” and “connecting the final dots”.

On a recent Friday evening, Mark Brewer and Jacques Fu joined State Representative Anna V. Eskamani to kick off DataKind’s weekend-long, high-energy hackathon devoted to building innovative digital tools that accelerate cross-sector impact.

Joining them were 65 data science professionals from Orlando, Gainesville, Miami, and Tampa. Together, they dedicated over one thousand hours in pro bono data science capacity to build and showcase data-driven applications to address the local challenges of high food insecurity, affordable housing, and underinvestment in early childhood education and care. 

Working alongside the project teams were subject matter experts from the Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida, the K-Ready Community, and the Florida Community Loan Fund as they worked with over 50 data sets and sources, crafting dozens of visualizations, digital prototypes, and insights. 

The projects will be immediately informative to local work and social impact organizations such as the Health and Hunger Task Force.  The materials will be packaged and shared for ongoing use and development supported by DataKind for ongoing engagement to maximize positive local impact in the near future. Until then, we’ll let Mark’s, Jacques’s, and Anna’s words speak for the importance and impact of the powerful community event and DataKind’s humanitarian data approach.

Thank you to our supporters: JASKY Foundation and Central Florida Foundation.

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