Microsoft's very generous donation to non-profits

I’m still donating some time helping out a charity with a small web-app. The concept is simple: Allow donations of prepared food, notify all agencies and allow the first agency who wants the donation to claim it.

It could possibly be done using anything from a closed facebook group, mailing list (which is effectively what this is) or even something off the shelf that I’m not aware of. But myself and a few students knocked up this web-app over a weekend and I’ve been fleshing it out a bit since.

One of the issues I’ve had recently though, is hosting. I have just been hosting it on a laptop from my office. Not ideal, but was okay while we were trialling it. We attempted to get hosting through Foodshare’s IT provider, but their wholesaler only supports Linux hosting (Wordpress mostly, on LAMP stack), so I had to look for other options.

It’s a fairly lightweight app, so I was just going to pay for hosting and put it on either AWS or Azure. A quick spot of googling though, led me to Microsoft’s nonprofit offering. After applying (and verification through Techsoup) Microsoft generously donated enough Azure credits to easily run the web-app.

But now we’re up and running (and not off my laptop). Still need to get the domain name sorted, but for now I’m really impressed.