The Maxava iFoundation is once again delighted to announce a new funding pool to assist IBM i user groups following the record number of applications granted for 2015/16.
Established in 2011 to help IBM i user groups in any part of the world, the Maxava iFoundation aims to make a significant contribution to grow and strengthen the IBM i community. Each year, the program offers grants to qualifying not-for-profit organizations. The foundation’s particular interests are in supporting initiatives for the continuing education of existing IBM i professionals and for programs designed to promote greater usage of the IBM i platform generally.
Last year, the record number of applicants received included a significant increase in the European groups applying for funding. This year again, Maxava confirms total funding of US$50,000 to allow the foundation to offer grants of up to a maximum of US$2,000 (depending on number and merit of applications) for each qualifying organization.
Matthew Kingdon from the Utah IBM i Professionals Association (UIIPA) described how his group has benefitted from their Maxava iFoundation grant:
“The Utah IBM i Professionals Association, also called UIIPA, is completing its 31st year. We currently have one member who is the same age as the group while the rest of us are a bit older, okay, some of us are a lot older. One important challenge we face is to make our user group gatherings more enjoyable and stimulating for young people to encourage their involvement.”
He continues, “To achieve this goal, we improved the quality of educational presentations by rewarding the presenters for their time and effort. Internally, we offered a free corporate membership to the organization that attended the most number of meetings in the year, to encourage members to stay actively in touch with the user group community. Last but not least, we started to provide a modest lunch after the meetings, which helps people stay longer to continue on with the discussions, and make personal-level connections. All these became possible with the grants provided by the Maxava iFoundation.”
“These changes not only make the meetings more enjoyable, but have helped the group significantly increase attendance at the monthly meetings. In 2014 we averaged 15.5 attendees, in 2015, 21.6 attendees, and in 2016, 27.8 attendees. We have almost doubled our meeting attendance!” Explains Kingdon, Vice President of UIIPA.
“Maxava is delighted to be able to provide ongoing support to the IBM i community,” said Allan Campbell, CEO of Maxava. “When you get the chance to sit down with volunteers like Matthew and hear how the Maxava iFoundation has assisted them in maintaining and growing a vibrant IBM i community, it is very encouraging. With IBM’s continuing enhancement of the O/S, the rapid growth of cloud computing, and the emergence of new models to support users, there is certainly plenty for IBM i professionals to get together and talk about.” He added.
Maxava iFoundation grants can be used to support activities such as educational conferences and workshops, speaker expenses, marketing and educational collaboration with local colleges and universities, and other similar growth activities.
Interested organizations should visit maxavaifoundation.com to view application criteria and download the application form. Submissions should be received by 15 July 2016.