Community

Beehive icon with bees buzzing

Community

Committed to the Boston-area and beyond

We believe that it is important to be involved with the communities in which we live and work, and so we give back some of our our time, our resources, and our technology to help others.

Each person at Annkissam spends up to 10% of their work time volunteering and as an organization we donate at least 10% of our annual surplus to the nonprofit sector.
 

Volunteering

Our staff enjoys participating in a variety of volunteering opportunities. We believe that giving back is fundamental to building a strong community. Here are a few of the places we currently volunteer at:

Haley House

Haley House is a soup kitchen that provides hot, nourishing food to Bostonians in need. In addition to sustenance, the meals provide an opportunity for guests to escape the violence and anonymity of the streets. The kitchen is open to the dining area to encourage guests to volunteer and volunteers to share meals with guests. This approach fosters reciprocal learning and builds strong relationships between volunteers and guests.

"I volunteer at breakfast every Tuesday, cooking, serving, eating, and cleaning up. I have also been helping to build a Haley House database application. It's a fantastic community that I'm glad to be a part of!"

- Lucas, Annkissam Volunteer

RailsBridge Boston

Railsbridge Boston is a weekend workshop on Ruby on Rails for women. Led by an all-volunteer team of seasoned and enthusiastic Ruby on Rails developers, the workshop features one-on-one instruction, classroom-style lectures, and an online curriculum. In its first year, the workshop was attended by hundreds of women at no cost to them, and it has resulted in a more diverse and welcoming developer community in Boston

"When members of the Boston Ruby community first got together to try to develop some outreach programs and grow the community, I was happy to get involved. I believe it's important to minimize the barrier to entry that many women experience when they try to get into programming."

- Dylan, Annkissam Volunteer

"It's amazing how many people from different backgrounds come together to challenge themselves to learn programming for the first time. People have come up to us in the past to let me know they learned a lot from the experience and that's really great to hear."

- Jiyeon, Annkissam Volunteer

Alzheimer's Association ®

The Alzheimer's Association was founded in 1979 to provide critical care, support, and research for the individuals and families living with Alzheimer's disease. The association is fueled by compassion for those in need and a determination to use research and education to eliminate a disease that affects the lives so many people. Among their many targeted avenues of attack on Alzheimer's, they offer a 24 hour helpline, support groups, care-giving resources, clinical trial matching, educational programs, scientific publications, conventions, and research grants.

"I'm continually amazed by the incredible accomplishments of the Alzheimer's Association and appreciative of the dedication and hard work of all those involved, employees and volunteers alike. It is truly a wonderful organization, doing wonderful things."

- Jim, Annkissam Volunteer

CASPAR

CASPAR’s Emergency Service Center (ESC) is one of two shelters in Massachusetts that accept homeless people who are actively using alcohol and drugs. At the ESC clients receive medical and mental health care, nutritional food, personal hygiene supplies, clean clothes, counseling, case management, and employment, housing, and treatment referrals in an environment that is welcoming and safe. The ESC provides 24-hour shelter, 365 days a year to residents of Cambridge and Somerville.

"I help out in the kitchen, cooking, serving, and cleaning. I volunteer every Wednesday, and every time I'm there I see first hand the significance the shelter has to so many people's lives. Though I'm only ever in the kitchen I feel like I'm part of something truly great."

- Matteo, Annkissam Volunteer

 

Community Groups

Annkissam staff enjoy learning from and contributing to the following excellent Boston-area community groups.

Nonprofit Consultants Network

Nonprofit Consultants Network is a forum for independent consultants who work with community-based nonprofits, government agencies and the private sector. The forum is dedicated to improving the quality of life in our communities by providing our clients with high quality, ethical service and is committed to encouraging diversity and opposing discrimination in any form.

501 Tech Club Boston

The 501 Tech Club is a monthly gathering of people working on nonprofit technology in the Boston area. The meetings are opportunities for anyone interested in helping nonprofits use technology to get together and talk shop in a fun, informal setting. The name refers to the fact that most of us work primarily with and for 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations.

Massachusetts Nonprofit Network

The Massachusetts Nonprofit Network (MNN) is the only statewide organization that brings together nonprofits, funders, business leaders, and elected officials to strengthen nonprofits and raise the sector's voice on critical issues. MNN has more than 750 nonprofit and for-profit affiliate members that represent every subsector and region of the state and receive special benefits and discounts as MNN members.

Boston Ruby Group

The Boston Ruby Group meets monthly to discuss the latest news and functionality of Ruby and Rails.  As members of the Boston Ruby Group, we are able to stay up-to-date on the latest uses and trends in this ever-growing technology, while sharing our expertise with other technologists.

Drupal Association

The Drupal Association is dedicated to fostering and supporting the Drupal software project, the community and its growth. The Association helps the Drupal community with funding, infrastructure, education, promotion, distribution and online collaboration at Drupal.org.

NPO Connect logo

Build Your Skills with NPO Connect

Annkissam helped to develop the free skill-sharing site NPO Connect with Kenny Weill. NPO Connect allows nonprofit professionals to share their skills and mentor other professionals. Offering webinars, expert-led forums, and a library of "How To" content, NPO Connect is a great resource for the nonprofit community. Check it out here!

 

 

Open Source

At Annkissam, we strive to contribute to open source projects. We know that working together is essential to accomplish truly great things. Below are a few of the Ruby Gems that we have created and released to the community for general use.

acts_as_span

Two arrows pointing in opposite directions

Compose ActiveRecord objects with a start_date and end_date into spans. Query those spans for overlap, validate non-overlap, check if a date is within a span and current, future, or expired.

dalliance

Bar graph with varying heights

Wrap an ActiveRecord object with a single background processes in a common interface. Supports resque or delayed jobs. Adds a state machine, error handling, and (optionally) a progress bar.

seasons_of_love

Month view of calendar

This Ruby gem splits two dates into a subset of ranges divided by month. It provides a single method, split_dates_into_ranges, which takes in a start date and an end date, and spits out a hash containing all of the months between them in a specific format.

i18n-recursive-lookup

Two overlapping speech bubbles

The i18n-recursive-lookup gem was born out of a need to provide an easy way to customize content for our clients. It extends the existent i18n backend for the Rails framework to allow translation values to recursively interpolate other translation values by reference their translation keys. This allows us to centralize specific terms in common dictionaries for easy customization.

Want to get involved? Send us an email at info@annkissam.com and we'll help you get started.