Rally Software, a provider of enterprise software development tools, services and Agile solutions, announced that it will provide funding, tools, and expertise to Code for America to help enable citizen developers.
As part of their new strategic relationship with Code for America, Rally will help empower the Brigade program, which mobilizes a network of volunteers who combine their talents with technology to improve their communities.
According to company officials, the Rally For Impact Foundation has made an initial $50,000 grant to Code for America to help grow the organization’s Brigade program. Rally also is providing its software solutions for Agile teams. In addition, Rally’s Agile coaches will work with Brigades as mentors during a 2015 pilot program to help them maximize their ability to deliver results.
Cities targeted for this pilot Brigade program currently include Boulder and Denver, Colo., Raleigh, N.C., and one large metropolitan area that is yet to be announced. As an outcome of these efforts, Rally will work with Code for America to develop a custom Agile toolkit for Brigades across the country.
“We believe that empowered people who can adapt to change and harness their collective creativity are essential for solving today’s big problems,” said Ryan Martens, Founder and CTO at Rally. “We’re eager to work with Code for America to further our social mission by mobilizing the citizen engineers participating in the Brigade program. Our support will share our powerful tools and expertise with the Brigades so they can work faster, more efficiently, and more collaboratively to achieve better results — and ultimately help Code for America further its mission of fostering civic innovation.”
According to the company Website, the focus of Rally Software’s strategic social impact initiative is inspired by the book, Citizen Engineer, in which the authors define citizen engineers as “the connection point between science and society — between pure knowledge and how it is used. Citizen engineers are techno-responsible, environmentally responsible, economically responsible, socially responsible participants in the engineering community.”
Code for America is a national nonprofit that partners with local governments and citizens to improve delivery of government services. The organization builds open source technology and organizes a network of people dedicated to making government services simple, effective, and easy to use. The group encourages residents to take active roles in their communities, facilitating collaboration between government staff, fostering forward-thinking approaches to solving city problems, and supporting civic-minded entrepreneurs and startups.
Meanwhile, the Code for America Brigade program is an organizing force for civic-minded developers, designers, data scientists and leaders who contribute their talents to address the problems that cities face every day. Brigades build participatory power in their cities by holding regular civic hack nights and events, advocating for open data and deploying apps.
In a statement, Jennifer Pahlka, founder and executive director of Code for America, praised Rally for “the expertise they bring in building Agile teams. Together, our efforts will strengthen communities by providing Brigades with the funding, tools, training, and mentorship to grow and thrive.”
One year ago, Rally created the Rally For Impact Foundation as part of Rally’s 1 percent stock donation. The Brigade program grant is the foundation’s largest investment to-date.
Rally said its social mission is focused on making a positive impact in the communities where Rally employees live and work. The company’s culture of giving encourages employees to spend 1 percent of their paid time volunteering, as well as giving back to their community on their personal time. As a result, Rally employees have contributed nearly 16,000 volunteer hours since 2006. “We actively embrace the community around us by participating in and hosting events focusing on social enterprise, entrepreneurism, technology and sustainability,” the company said on its Website.