Google Awards $5 Million To Aussie Charities Solving Problems With Technology

Ten Aussie not-for-profits with great ideas for using technology to solve a problem and make an impact were earlier this year named as finalists in Google’s Impact Challenge.

From apps to preserve Indigenous languages to robots saving the Great Barrier Reef, these organisations pitched their ideas to a panel of judges in Sydney yesterday for the chance to each receive a $750,000 grant and support from Google.

The main winners, each taking away a $750,000 prize are:

The George Institute for Global Health with an SMS-based support service to help people with chronic diseases lead healthier lives, Center for Eye Research Australia with an eyesight self-assessment system for Australians in remote areas and Hello Sunday Morning with a personalised support app to help people with alcohol problems.

Google also invited Australians to vote for the project they thought would have the biggest impact. More than 250,000 people voted online, making it the highest number of votes per-capita for any Google Impact Challenge around the world! The result of voting was so close this year Google decided to award two winners of the people’s choice, each will receive $750,000.

The people’s choice recipients are The Nature Conservancy Australia with mobile technology to protect global fish stocks and the livelihoods of coastal communities and Great Barrier Reef Foundation with We wrote more about the “reef Robot” here.

The remaining finalists will also recieve $250,000.

They are The Australian Literacy and Numeracy Foundation with community driven literacy apps designed to preserve indigenous languages, Australian Marine Environment Protection Association (AUSMEPA) with an information repository to drive emissions transparency within the shipping industry, Justice Connect with a web portal that connects individuals and communities to pro bono legal services, World Vision Australia with a network of innovative heat-sensing fire detectors designed to save lives in Bangladesh and The Olga Tennison Autism Research Centre with a smartphone app to help parents identify childhood autism.

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