Irish Times – ChangeX urges people to join €1m community action plan

UN deputy secretary-general Amina Mohammad; ChangeX’s Niamh McKenna; Geraldine Byrne Nason, Irish ambassador to the UN; and ChangeX founder Paul O’Hara at a 2018 event. Photograph: Allen Kiely

Article from Irish Times – Social entrepreneurship platform ChangeX is calling on people to join a €1 million community action plan to help fight issues caused by the coronavirus outbreak.

The funding, which was provided by Web Summit, will support a three-month campaign to tackle everything from social isolation among the most vulnerable in the community to supporting frontline workers.

Participants can join an existing programme or submit an idea of their own.

The project is launching with seven ideas, including online exercise classes for older people with Siel Bleu Ireland, growing food at home with Grow It Forward by GIY Ireland, supporting the Neighbourhood Network to help vulnerable members of the community and Foodcloud to help distribute food to those who need it.

“The spirit of solidarity we have in Ireland right now has never been stronger. I believe this sense of community and our desire to look after each other will help get us through this,” said Paul O’Hara, founder, and chief executive of ChangeX.


“Clearly we have to be creative in how to stay helpful, active and connected while staying home. It is critical we look after our own mental and physical health through this crisis, while supporting those around us that may need it. There are so many people looking to help and we’ve put together a number of ideas that people can get started with if they have the time and energy to do so.”

FoodCloud and Heroes-Aid, which is providing practical support such as protective equipment and longer terms psychological, educational and practical support for healthcare workers and their families, have already received €100,000 in support from the community call fund.

ChangeX helps fund projects around the world, focusing on tech for good and offering investors a way to fund community projects. Companies can choose a region they want to invest in and issues they would like to have an impact on, and ChangeX will offer potential projects on its platform that fit the criteria.

Established in 2015, ChangeX has been backed by investors such as Ben & Jerry’s co-founder Jerry Greenfield, Realex Payments founder Colm LyonDraper Esprit’s Brian CaulfieldAndreessen Horowitz partner John O’Farrell and Storyful founder Mark Little.


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