Past Hacks for humanity

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“Hacks for Humanity 2021” focuses on ways to intervene social issues with technology – Arizona PBS


“Hacks for Humanity” is an annual event that brings people together to come up with interventions to a variety of social problems. This year’s focus is healthcare and water issues, along with concerns in sports. ASU Foundation Professor Dr. Neal Lester is the founding director of “Hacks for humanity.”
“For the 8th year it is still a competition that’s 36 hours that brings people from high school age 16 through retirees together to create technologies for the social good,” Lester said. Read more

2021 Tracks

Nearly 350,000 health apps are in circulation today. Yet, according to the World Bank and World Health Organization, at least half of the world’s population cannot obtain essential health services. What obstacles keep this issue alive? How can technology be a way to re-imagine existing approaches to healthcare that do not limit equitable access to quality care?

Sports can bring individuals and communities together in a moment of shared humanity. This vastly profitable industry also can cause damage to the environment, exploit the vulnerable, and be politicized to do harm. Athletes, administrators, advertisers and fans all have a role to play. How can technology dismantle the  inequity, injustice and sometimes downright abuse that occurs in sports?

Water is essential for creating and sustaining life on Earth. Whether people realize it or not, water plays a role in many social, political, environmental, and health issues. What solutions can lead to more respect for bodies of water and all the living things that need it to survive?

Hacks for Humanity 2021 at a glance

The Achievers

First Place: Team 7
Team Members: Christine Redhead, Farhan Pratama, Rachel Eisner, Avnish Singh
Project: meaSURE
Track: Water

MeaSURE is a platform that provides users the tools to see water quality everywhere they go, with real-time metrics in their hands—allowing them to speak up and speak out against those who see them as just another number on a spreadsheet.

Second Place: Team 14
Team Members: Jessica Cassidy, Laila H. Masoud, Michel Nzihou, Helena Makendengue, Crissel Ignacio
Project: SOS Kids
Track: Sports

Kids often face a variety of challenges, such as anxiety, depression, and even abuse, when involved in competitive sports. SOS Kids provides mental health resources to help children identify and deal with these issues.

Third Place: Team 5
Team Members: Mari David, Antonio Mendieta, Karl McPhee, Siddharth Singha Roy
Project: Expression
Track: Healthcare

Expression is a note-taking app that journals the user’s thoughts. It addresses the mental health issues of dealing with stress, depression, and anxiety by providing a healthy and private way to express oneself.

Best Built Project: Team 6
Team Members: Kaushik Indukuri, Sibashis Kjadanga, Wilfred Chukwu, Yash Gadhade, Isaac Baidoo
Project: Athleteaton
Track: Sports

In sports, it is often very difficult for upcoming or amateur athletes to participate in big sporting events or leagues. This solution provides a platform for athletes (especially beginners) to come together and play or have access to events all over the world.

Best Website: Team 1
Team Members: Aastha Naik, Shifa Ibrahim, Pamela Appiah, Joy Agus, Carlos Cristerna
Project: ASD Allies
Track: Healthcare

ASD Allies differs from your standard autism resources websites because its website also connects clients to healthcare professionals, offers personalized programs for each child at different stages in their childhood, and provides parent-centered support and resources. Unlike other informative websites providing an exhaustive list of resources that can be time-consuming to navigate, ASD Allies provides an experience and information that is unique and also relevant.

Finalist: Team 12
Team Members: Haemin Ryu, Idika Verma, Naomi Bisimwa, Chorya Harshal, Shreyal Geddam
Project: PLUR
Track: Sports

PLUR is a web app that uses local resources and crowdsourcing to build a strong database of programs and facilities that are accessible for individuals with disabilities,while raising awareness about anti-bullying and inclusion in sports.

Finalist: Team 8
Team Members: Brian Neal, Christine Bisimwa, Sakshi Kodre, Natalia Sumali, Rachel Aitanun
Project: Seeing Is Believing
Track: Healthcare

Seeing Is Believing is a comparison calculator that will help Americans see how much they have to pay (even with health insurance) and offers to mobilize them to demand changes from their leaders for better healthcare.





How can societal attitudes about and responses to aging acknowledge the humanity of every individual?

What are solutions that lead us toward personal, public, or emotional safety? How does safety contribute to the wellbeing of individuals, organizations, and communities?

What is justice, and how is justice achieved in a way that takes into account the humanity of every human? To what extent can thinking about and practicing justice–and its opposite, injustice– be challenged and realized through innovation and creative entrepreneurship?

Winners 2020


Product helps potential victims identify if their relationship is abusive, connect them to the appropriate services, provide ongoing support, and the ability to record abusive incidents in the form of a journal. The solution looks to empower victims to recognize when they are in an abusive situation and seek support services. They are at the heart of everything we do and we seek to support them through Humanity 101 Principles such as endless compassion, kindness, respect, and empathy. On the other side of abuse, we still want to support victims through self-forgiveness and self-reflection.


An app where users can plan what happens after “what if” by using the app before they head out, set their emergency contacts and the duration they expect to be out for, and a plan for their emergency contacts to be contacted in case an emergency happens. This product depends on social networks of people who want each other to be safe. In this sense, the app and its users amplify the Humanity 101 principles of compassion, empathy, and respect.

3rd PLACE  (TIE)

A one-stop-shop for older adults to find resources and benefits based on the information they input into the app. streamline finding and claiming eligible funds based on user input. The app also has a feature automated the filling out of “End of Life” documents easier by au like Last will and Testament, Trust, Power of Attorney, Healthcare Power of Attorney, Living will, HIPAA release and Letter of Intent which require repetitive information. The Humanity 101 principles used are respect because it helps older adults be self-reliant, empathy because its informational videos will help visitors learn about challenges facing older adults and compassion because the app itself is a product of compassion for older people.

An app that facilitates volunteer food delivery services for people in vulnerable communities such as older adults and immunocompromised people. The app also features Google Home support, so it can be accessible to a wider range of the population who do not possess visual or literacy skills. The Humanity 101 principles of respect, kindness, empathy, and compassion are demonstrated and will be amplified by this app because it encourages people of all ages to work with each other to create a better community for the aging population. It works to recognize some of the challenges people may be facing in a certain community, and others in that community, out of their own volition, will be able to take action that will help to solve or alleviate those issues.

Participant Engagement

In Your Home Scavenger Hunt

Participants are given 15 minutes to collect as many household  items from the list as they can.

BOB ross ms paint

Participants “paint” along with Bob Ross videos on MS Paint.

Live Pitch Karaoke

Participants make up impromptu pitches for random objects.

Hacks for Humanity 2020 global participation

Hacks for humanity 2020 saw a number of people from all over the world participate in the hackathon

Social Media Challenge

Sponsors 2020




Food is one of the most basic of human needs and one of the most fundamental sources of cultural identity.In what ways can we improve the way individuals experience and/or get access to food?

The notion of “family” is complicated, subjective, and often conveys more than just those who are related to one another by blood. How can tending to and/or connecting with the ones we call “family” be better for all involved?

According to the cliché, “Money makes the world go ‘round,”yet it can also be an obstacle that brings it to a complete stop. How does money and the world of finance interconnect with “social good”?



1st Place:This technology allows parents to aid their children in taking accountability for their sharedresponsibilities. Kids record promises made and the app reminds kids of promise. Kids then report to the app when those promises have been kept. An agreed upon reward system is set up by kids and parents.Underscoring the Humanity 101 principles of self-reflection, respect, and integrity, this app counters “childism”—“prejudice against children as a group”–by allowing youngsters to participate more fully in a democratic-run household.


2nd Place: This app connects people who have been separated from their families to lost family members. People whose families have been separated can search for family members based on date and location when separated. Identity markers are kept private until personal questions are properly answered to match folks to each other. This technology embodies these Humanity 101 principles: empathy, compassion, and forgiveness.

New Hope

3rd Place:This technology supports non-profits that serve patients in hospice care with no relatives nearby to visit them. This app allows arrangements for funding the travel of one relative to visit their loved one in their final moments. Once an institutional caseworker verifies that an individual is in hospice or has experienced a catastrophic health crisis and the patient has no relatives nearby to see them, the patient then identifies a relative they want to see them. After the selection process, the app’s main functionality is that of a trip planner/travel app. It assists in booking flights, lodging, transportation, and navigating the city to find the patient in hospice. The app also helps secure funding for these measures through corporate sponsorships. Humanity 101 principles: compassion, empathy, and kindness.







Unique this year, Project Humanities linked with University of Texas at Dallas (UTD) to host our hackathons synchronously. UTD followed Project Humanities’ model by incorporating the goal of working towards the social good via Humanity 101 principles, along with the same tracks to guide participants’ creations. Both Project Humanities and
UTD livestreamed workshops to share with each other.
Check out UT Dallas images for the Hackathon
Hacks for Humanity Event Brings Together Technical Know-How
Winners for Hacks for Humanity 2018 UT Dallas


Interview with Dr. Lester on “Sunday Sunrise”



My Siren

1st Place(Tied): Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing are at risk of harm from emergency vehicles, especially during the day when flashing lights are not easily visible. This vibrating siren detection phone app alerts deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals to nearby emergency vehicles. It operates for both pedestrians and drivers, especially those in urban areas. Of the Humanity 101 principles, this one embodies empathy, kindness, compassion and respect, and enhances the lives of those using the product by providing safety and mobility solutions that do not depend on others around them. No other safety-focused resource like this serves this underserved population.

Noobs: Self-driving Humans

1st Place (Tied): Mobility for the visually impaired is a reality for some 285 million individuals globally. This app goes beyond the existence of service dogs, smart walking canes, and mobile guidance apps. This app improves mobility for the visually impaired by allowing more independence and safety. Our product improves and simplifies these individuals’ daily tasks while allowing them to be more independent and secure. This technology embodies these Humanity 101 principles: compassion, empathy, integrity and respect. It allows these individuals to be better integrated into their environments with greater confidence to perform daily tasks and to be at one with their physical environments.


2nd Place: This app connects individuals who have shared interests and exposes children to more diverse perspectives and experiences, thus creating respect, integrity, empathy, compassion, and self-reflection. A communal parenting app for those families without immediate communal support, this app builds trust and allows others to become more engaged. This instrument allows parents to create a bio that can be found by other parents within a given neighborhood. Parents will update a website with upcoming events or experiences they will be putting together or doing, and other families can choose to join them or have their child join them. Kids will be able to meet and see many other cultures and ideas this way and learn to respect differences.

The Link

3rd Place: Millions of children all over the world are victims of child labor.Over 10 million children drop out of school every year. This app is a crowd funding app for children to attend school, embodying these Humanity 101 principles: compassion, empathy and kindness. This solution is an opportunity to save children who fall through the proverbial crack, because they can’t afford an education. This product further reduces the gap between various NGOs and underserved children who cannot afford education, allowing everyday people to step in and support. This creates a data pipeline to promote children’s education, especially for corporations and government agencies. It’s both a social awareness campaign and a community-building vehicle.









1st Place: Envolve is a community service web-based application that facilitates volunteers’ communications with organizations and among one another by providing them a platform to filter events based on their interest, set volunteering teams, communicate with other volunteers, and reward them for their work through official certificates of service.


2nd Place: Gabby is an interactive support device for seniors who live alone. Through devices such as Alexa, Fitbits, and Google watches, seniors’ movements are tracked to determine when a senior is experiencing crisis and notifies designated contacts when an episode of crisis – such as a fall- occurs.

Recognize We

3rd Place: RecognizeMe! Bridges the gap between community organizers and their volunteers through an online network that posts different projects within an organization and rewards volunteers for participating in these projects through a points-based system

4th Place: From Dunces to Dragon
Dunces and Dragon is an application that connects students struggling in certain topics to students who are willing to help and capable of answering questions. It is a network that builds peer-mentors’ credibility by awarding them points by asking and answering questions. It facilitates the spread of information and professional relationship building across student networks.

5th Place: Raw
Ecofoot tackles climate change by raising awareness of individuals impact on the environment by giving them a space to log their activities and compete against their friends to be the most ecologically conscious. The Ecofoot app also tracks the impacts, both positive and negative, of their activities.

6th Place: Bold and Brash
The Ventilator helps individuals struggling with anger issues by giving them outlets to express their anger, analyze the root causes of their concerns, and reflect on ways to productively manage their anger in the future. More advanced iterations of the app could connect people with similar problems or allow mental healthcare professionals to track their patient’s progress.

7th Place: Helping Hand
Help on Demand connects people experiencing crisis to communities and organizations that have the exact resources that they need.








Drive as Local

1st Place: This app will assist automobile drivers who visit and drive in other countries by familiarizing them with the different traffic rules than in a driver’s hometown. Too often drivers who go to other places risks getting traffic tickets, being in or causing accidents, and worse even death when they do not know the traffic rules of other places they are visiting.

Joining Perspectives – Experience Sharing

2nd Place: This app will help non-profits increase their revenue streams while also inspiring first-time donors and investors. The solution will allow donors to find activities they enjoy while also giving to non-profits. Companies and experienced providers who want to pay for an experience can also promoting while also donating.

6 Sigma

3rd Place: Smoking is a public health, interpersonal, and life-threatening problem in society. This product seeks to use the pervasiveness of mobile technology to hack the habit formation cycle and fight addiction through pinpoint targeting of triggers and active intervention.






1st Place: Interactive behavioral therapy app that provides an interface between individuals diagnosed with ADHD and their parents. It features puzzles and games that help them to focus their attention when they are experiencing symptoms of the disorder.

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Loop Learn

2nd Place: Loop Learn is composed of two parts. One is an app and website that connects disabled students with other students and resources in their area. The other is providing a platform for adaptive learning using biosensor feedback and facial recognition to connect students with learning disabilities to counselors, teachers, and fellow students.

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Guard Dog

3rd Place: App that detects physical trauma (such as a fall) via sensors in a phone and alerts emergency personnel.





ARK Humanity

1st Place: An engine to augment outreach to prevent self-harm by spotting cues in online communication.

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Acts of Random Kindness

2nd Place: A daily reminder app to bring more kindness to regular life.

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Pocket Buddy

3rd Place: Connecting users to mental health resources.

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