This is COVID Global Hackathon 2.0: a cross between a hackathon, accelerator and a community. We match your superpowers with ideation, mentoring, and expertise in a week-long sprint to enable you to use them for good.

In collaboration with members of the COVID-19 Research and Technology Task ForceAARP, an extraordinary collection of nonprofits, companies, and social service organizations, we are working to spark creative solutions to the mental and social symptoms of loneliness caused by isolation, social distancing, and economic hardship. Improving the happiness of vulnerable groups—communities of color, seniors, those who live alone, children, the homeless, and more—is a global priority. Good ideas can from anywhere, and in the best cases, come from the collision of diverse perspectives.

You are welcome to join this community of designers, engineers, researchers, mentors, social and mental health experts, operators, and more. This particular event is not a competition—it's a collaboration, a chance for you to build and become an agent of change in a time of uncertainty. We will help you every step of the way.

Starting on July 3rd, you will be able to contact dozens of experts via Slack from social and health nonprofits during scheduled office hours. Public companies and startups with expertise in software programming, machine learning, design, and hardware will also be on call to help you build your hacks.

Don’t let the start date scare you. Join anytime, contact mentors, plug into existing projects or start your own.

:exclamation: ️If you are a registered participant, check out the hackathon field guide:exclamation:


Learn about the hackathon and what our mentors are up to...

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TIMELINE - Focus Now: Team Matching & Ideation

  • Friday July 3: Community Open
  • Saturday July 4: Team Matching & Ideation
  • Sunday July 5: Keynote
  • Monday-Saturday July 6-11: Mentorship
  • Monday-Saturday July 6-11: Build week
  • Monday-Wednesday July 6-8: Speaker Series
  • Sunday July 12: Show & Tell
  • July Onwards: Project support and development from organizers and mentors
  • August 2020: Demo day will be announced soon





These are some of the questions you and the experts are facing:

  • How do we connect people in unique ways to prevent loneliness when isolation is their only option?
  • How do we convince all people to wear masks?
  • How are communities of color affected by COVID-19? How do we expose that information? What do we do with it?
  • How do we support people with very little broadband access? How do we expose the problem? How do we resolve it?
  • How do we help people engage with each other in safe ways when social distancing is not an option?
  • How do we help people to leave behind negative baggage, whether due to racism or loss of a loved one, and see a positive future ahead?
  • How can we help people recognize when they're working too hard? How can we help them avoid burnout?
  • How can we help people detect infection early and cheaply?
  • How can we find new ways to create access to science? How can we accelerate discovery?
  • How do we create equitable outcomes of happiness? In the future, who gets to be happy?




COVID-19 is not just going to go away. There's reason to be very worried for what's next:

  • Adults are three times more likely to report that they're in severe psychological distress. [1]
  • 94% of COVID-19 deaths are of people aged 45+ in New York [2]
  • People of color are being killed by COVID-19 at 6-10 times the rate of others [3]
  • Over the next few days, 60% of states will likely lift moratoriums on evictions even though unemployment is around 20% [4]

Now that we all know what living in the COVID-19 era is like and how differently it affects others, we’re launching this hackathon to find a way forwards. This isn't just about the week-long sprint—this is an opportunity to find personal motivation, teammates, and mentors, which can be the difference between your idea growing from a concept into a long-term solution. 



Submissions will be reviewed by an expert panel. This is an opportunity to network, get feedback, further your projects, connect with potential advisors and mentors for your organization, recruit team members, and gain potential media exposure. This is a collaboration rather than a competition. We encourage you to share resources, information, and ideas freely with others and look for ways to support and help other teams. This is the time to to build tech that helps people in need.




  • Work on projects that are broadly useful in improving mental health, social connection, and economic hardship.
  • Work on projects that address the needs of a vulnerable population: people of color, native peoples, seniors, the homeless, families in foster care, immigrants, domestic abuse survivors, veterans, those who live alone, etc.
  • Bring in existing code and projects if you're already engaged on these issues.
  • Work with existing efforts, tools, and organizations including those listed under the Resources and Orgs pages if you see a way you could contribute. 








This hackathon is open to attendees of all ages and from all backgrounds, genders, and geographies, except where prohibited by law.



Option 1: Build a production-ready solution for immediate impact

Option 2: Ship an awesome proof-of-concept with lots of potential

Option 3: Develop a project with an existing organization, such as with one of our collaborators

See the Project Ideas page for more details

Production-ready projects will not be favored over proof-of-concepts. The judges’ focus will be for submissions that have the strongest potential impact on the mental health challenges caused by COVID-19. After the hackathon we will work to help you develop your project to the point where it's deployable.



Submission form 

  • Submit your project here on Devpost before the deadline and be sure to answer all of the questions on the submission form. Submission (including video/code links) are editable until the submission deadline. This and other information related to your submission will be treated consistent with the Devpost privacy policy.
  • If you submit before the deadline, you may continue to make edits to your submissions until the end of the submission period.
  • Reviewers are not required to test the code and may review solely based on the text, images, and video provided.

Video (optional)

  • Upload a video walk-through your solution via YouTube or Vimeo, and include the link on your Devpost page for your project. 
  • By submitting a video, you are acknowledging that these materials may be used to promote the hackathon anywhere in the world, without extra obligation to you.
  • Videos should be a maximum of 2 minutes long. 
    • Only the first two minutes of each video will be evaluated.
    • Videos should not use third party trademark or copyrighted music (unless you own the copyright).

GitHub or other code repo link (optional)

  • Please ensure that this link is publicly shareable so judges can access your project

Hackathon Sponsors


Demo Day Presenter (3)

Honorable Mentions (4)

Devpost Achievements

Submitting to this hackathon could earn you:


Please see Reviewers tab

Please see Reviewers tab

Judging Criteria

  • Potential Impact
    Will the project be able to reach a point of completion from a technical perspective, and does it have the potential for positive impact amidst the current pandemic?
  • Technical Feasibility
    Is technology being implemented appropriately to address the problem? Looking at the implementation, is it possible to accomplish this project in order to help challenges relating to social isolation, mental health, and COVID-19 with urgency and impact?
  • Functionality and Meaningfulness
    Is the project purposefully solving a real problem? Is the project submitted going to have meaningful impact once fully completed?

Questions? Email the hackathon manager

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