Jon Bon Jovi Launches Project REACH Developer Competition
Jon, who's a member of the White House Council for Community Solutions, joined forces last week with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and the Departments of Housing and Urban Development, Health and Human Services to announce a new developer challenge called Project REACH (an acronym for Real-time Electronic Access for Caregivers and the Homeless).
The challenge is a call for developers to create an easily-used mobile/web application to connect service providers and offer real-time information about resources for the homeless and others in need. The first five entries to meet the requirements will receive a $10,000 cash prize and the opportunity to test their app at the JBJ Soul Kitchen, and the grand prize winner will be awarded $25,000.
In an announcement about the initiative, the singer and philanthropist said:
"At the [JBJ] Soul Kitchen, we’ve seen the need for a simple, user-friendly, comprehensive application that connects those in need to resources in their community. As we sought out a solution to resolve the disconnect, we found the VA, HUD and HHS to be of like mind. Together we can provide the information about existing services –- now we need the bright minds in the developer community to create a platform to tie it all together."
Added Secretary of House and Urban Development Shaun Donovan, “I want to thank Jon Bon Jovi for ... using competition and innovation to advance the cause of ending homelessness.”
With the new contest, Jon and the others involved hope to create a national platform that enables health clinics, food kitchens, housing services and shelters to update availability of key services automatically on the internet.
For more information about REACH and the contest details, visit the program's official website.