Code the Change helps computer scientists use their skills for social change. We want to make social change an integral part of computer science culture. Gandhi said that we must be the change we wish to see in the world; Code the Change believes that computer scientists must code the change they wish to see in the world.
Many students are turned off of computer science because they think that it means working on excessively technical problems, and they can't see the social impact of their work. Often, they don't know who could use their help. The great irony is that nonprofits and other organizations in the public and social sectors need computer science work now more than ever before; they just don't have the same recruiting budgets that tech companies have.
Even worse, the people who are working on computer science and social change are not working together. As a result, there is little sharing of best practices, and groups continually reinvent the wheel. The space of computer science and social change won't flourish until an organization steps in and brings people together.
To these ends, Code the Change is forming a national network of schools and connecting computer scientists with nonprofits. Since 2009, we have been coordinating long term projects and hosting Code Jams where computer scientists program for nonprofits. Our projects range from data visualization for a California college preparation nonprofit to using Android phones to track agricultural diseases in Uganda. We also provide career counseling to students interested in volunteering, interning, or programming full time for social change.