Childcare Innovation Social Hack

March 2 — Harbour Centre

Want to contribute to your community and social good?


About the hackathon

Pacific Immigrant Resource Society (PIRS), a non-profit organization, is hosting a social (non-tech) hackathon to dream up everyday solutions to real-life problems faced by immigrant women and their children.

We need dynamic individuals with a variety of skill sets to participate. Everyone — from artists to entrepreneurs to business leaders and accountants — has something to offer the hackathon. This is an incredible opportunity to get involved, give back, and collaboratively find better solutions to the ongoing childcare needs in our community.

Our goal is to better meet the needs of young families across the Lower Mainland through this dynamic and innovative social enterprise initiative.

What is the Challenge?

Here’s how it works: Participants will be presented with problem statements about the needs and challenges in our community. In small teams, you will explore the issues and collectively brainstorm innovative solutions that your team further develops throughout the day.

This is a great chance to meet with immigrant and childcare experts and to connect with other thought leaders in our community.

We will provide snacks and a wonderful lunch by Tayybeh — the Syrian culinary specialists!

When: March 2, 2019
Where: Harbour Centre, 515 W Hastings St, Vancouver, BC
5–minute walk from Waterfront Station
Time: 8:30 – 4:30

The next day, on March 3rd, we’ll expand on the chosen social enterprise ideas. We encourage all interested participants to join us.


Children Are Welcome!

We are pleased to provide FREE childcare for 2½ to 13-year-olds. And East Van Kids S.T.E.A.M. will be on-site hosting a mini hackathon for the older children! Please let us know if your children will be attending in advance.


  1. Arrival and registration

    Enjoy a light breakfast and get to know your fellow hackers.

  2. Welcome

    You’ll meet our mentors and the hackathon challenge will be presented, along with all necessary information and rules.

  3. The challenge begins!

    Our team will be available to provide you with any supplies or support that you may require.

  4. Lunch by Tayybeh

    Vegetarian and gluten-free options will be available. Teams are welcome to continue working during lunch, if they like, or take a well-deserved break.

  5. Judging begins

    Judges will visit teams, and each group will present their solutions. Presentations will be limited to 5 minutes each.

  6. Award ceremony

    We’ll announce the winners and present prizes.


Judges & Advisors


Rules & FAQ


Registration is open to all on Eventbrite. Registration closes March 1 at 5 PM PST.


Team formation

You do not have to have a team to register for this non-tech hackathon. We expect lots of participants will register as individuals.


Writing materials will be provided. A laptop is not required, but feel free to bring yours if you have one.

Code of Conduct

Everyone is welcome to the PIRS Hackathon regardless of gender, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, age, or religion. We do not tolerate harassment of participants in any form. Participants violating this code of conduct will be immediately expelled from the hackathon at the discretion of the organizers.


Teams will be judged by volunteers from different organizations and businesses throughout Vancouver. Judging criteria will be determined in advanced based on quality, social impact, design, and overall fit with the organization.


The social enterprise ideas and solutions created by the participants are solely owned by PIRS. Participants, agency partners, and sponsors have no rights to the solutions created during the PIRS Hackathon.

About PIRS

PIRS is a non-profit, community-based organization that has been providing services for immigrant women and their young children in Vancouver since 1975.

We have helped thousands of women from all around the world to gain the knowledge, skills, confidence and friendships they need to feel at home in Canada, and to participate more actively in their community.

PIRS provides a number of programs that support immigrant women and their young children in learning and practicing English, making new friends, gaining self-confidence, understanding their Canadian society, and in exploring and celebrating our Canadian diversity.

PIRS provides two program models: ESL for women with a childcare/preschool component; and women’s development programs in English, for women with intermediate English skills. Our program models provide women with awareness and key facts about their community, elements that are necessary to achieve the community involvement and integration that our participants aspire to.

Photo of PIRS staff