Last 13 May 2016, Microsoft Philippines and TechSoup Asia-Pacific had successfully capped off a 2-month long series of virtual events, trainings and conferences that spanned across two cities and has catered to over a hundred or more local NGOs in the Philippines.
Formerly known as NGO Connection Day, the Microsoft Technology for Good series served as a venue for Microsoft Philippines and TechSoup Asia-Pacific to bring together local Philippine NGOs of varying sizes and advocacies in order to: introduce them to the Microsoft’s technology donations made available for them, host hands-on training sessions courtesy of Microsoft product experts, and most of all, allow them to connect and learn from both experts and fellow NGOs alike.
The 2-month commitment began in the heart of Makati City, the busiest business district in Metro Manila. Held last 31 March, the first leg of Technology for Good series began with a half-day conference that brought together 85 representatives from 51 local NGOs in Metro Manila and neighbouring cities. In the half-day conference, local attendees were treated to an array of talks about local technological trends and innovations by both the government and fellow nonprofits alike.
From the innovative programs from nonprofits, standing out then was Gawad Kalinga (GK), a massive Philippine NGO that has successfully implemented Office 365 to create an efficient paperless system that can be accessed by their members both in the office and those on the field. Also joining GK in its ranks were PeaceTech, another local NGO whose innovative use of Skype has allowed them to create a virtual classroom where they host joint classroom sessions between a public school in Mindanao and in Metro Manila to foster better cultural understanding between the two groups.
Flying from the Philippines to Cebu, the second leg of the Technology for Good series took place last 14 April – for the very first time - in sunny Cebu City, the biggest business district in the region of Visayas, Philippines. With a somewhat apparent gap in technological adoption in the region, Microsoft Philippines and TechSoup focused then on more capacity-development sessions, bringing more training-oriented talks and demonstrations to the local NGOs. Leading these sessions were Eupher Pasion, a Microsoft expert, whom has delivered a talk on how NGOs can better leverage the features and components of Microsoft donations such as the apps in the Office suite, Office 365 and even Power BI. Joining Eupher then was also TechSoup’s own, Jed Adao, whom has delivered a talk as well on social media best practices and effective applications and advantages of Microsoft technology in the office setting.
Heading back to Metro Manila, Microsoft Philippines and TechSoup then followed through with 3 hands-on deep dive training sessions (27 April, 2 & 3 May) that gave local NGOs the chance to actually sit-down with Microsoft experts and get assistance on helping them register and implement Microsoft Office 365 donations for their offices.
Lastly, the Technology for Good series culminated with a 3-part webinar series (11-13 May) that served as a venue for NGOs to both have a deeper understanding of Office 365 and its components, and, as an opportunity for the NGOs to have additional consultations with the Microsoft experts as they continue to roll out their Office 365 donations in their own offices.
Awesome, right? Best look out as Technology for Good might be hitting your city - or country - soon enough!