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It’s orange. It’s plastic, and it hurts like hell when you stand on it.

Lego is back at this year’s Canterbury Tech Summit, and once again we’ll be asking Summit-goers to care.  

As the Summit Web Partner, Media Suite is lined up as a swag bag contributor. (You can read more about our position on swag bags here.) Put simply, we’re faced with providing hundreds of items for conference attendees that, realistically, would spend the next few years on someone’s desk. Once again, we want to do more than stress balls, branded pens or glossy pamphlets.

What’s the deal?

Last year, we trialled a charitable giving project at the Tech Summit which called for 600 Lego bricks and three worthy causes. Summit-goers received a Lego brick in their swag bag, and each brick was worth a $10 donation – if all 600 came back, we would be donating $6000 split across three charities. All that was needed, was for every attendee to visit our booth and place their Lego brick in front of the charity of their choosing – we pre-selected three that met our criteria. At the end of the day, we counted up the number of bricks for each charity, and made a donation to that value.

Last year, 207 of the 600 bricks were returned as votes = $2070 in donations made ($1260 to Code Club Aotearoa, $450 to YMCA Christchurch, and $360 to Action Station).

The aim of the game was to turn our swag bag contribution into a chance for doing good. We wanted to inspire people to give back, and at the same time, boost the coffers of some great causes.

And this year?

We’re determined to improve on 207 votes. There will be 650 bricks handed to Summit-goers as they enter through the main door, and we sincerely hope to get all 650 back. That’s a whopping $6500 we could be donating.

After scouring the country, we’ve identified three great causes that are sure to inspire your giving side. We were looking for Registered Charities that had a tech or software development focus or programme, that were active in their community and used their funding to maximise their output.

  • Code Club Aotearoa: Thanks to their tireless efforts to get children from all socio-economic backgrounds into coding, Code Club have again secured a spot in our lineup. This Christchurch-born charity has a strong history of putting their funding right where it’s needed most, and working hard to make every dollar count ,”to give every Kiwi kid the opportunity to learn to code, no matter who or where they are”.

  • The Champion Centre: Specialises in providing early intervention services to Canterbury infants and children with significant disabilities. Our donation will be targeted at contributing to the centre’s Computer Supported Learning Programme, which costs $50,000 in staff costs to run annually.  Learn more about the programme here.

  • Ministry of Inspiration: A Nelson-based charity working to get kids excited about careers and opportunities in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Maths. They have specific coding and tech programmes, and 20% of their participants are accepted on scholarship if they can’t afford to attend. The organisation runs on a shoe-string and invests back into the programmes it offers.

How do I vote?

As you enter Tech Summit through the main door, our team will be there to put an orange Lego brick in your hand. It’s up to you whether or not you use it. Swing by our booth at the Summit, add your vote to the charity of your choice.

See you there!

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