A Camp for Giving Back


Developers Give their Time and Talent to Help Local Nonprofits

Six LeanLogistics developers volunteered to attend a weekend camp together—not the kind where you pack you bag, jump in the car, and drive to a quiet locale to take in the view—but the kind where you lock yourself in a room, turn on the computer, and crank out as much code as possible. It’s a camp for giving back called GR GiveCamp: Code for Good.


Developer Mike Hartung talks about the changes the team is working on.

The yearly event brings together technology professionals from West Michigan who are willing to give their time and talent to help local nonprofits. The organizations are in need of help, and do not have the money or resources to tackle their technology challenges.

This was the first year LeanLogistics UI/UX Developer Derek Fricano volunteered for GR GiveCamp. He was teamed up with Camp Roger, along with developers Mike Hartung and Dan VeenKamp. Their weekend mission was to migrate their current Drupal-based website to WordPress, to implement analytics, and to convert their online payment integration to a new platform. They also had several marketing goals to accomplish as well.

“We put in some late hours mashing about a week’s worth of work into two days, and every last minute was jammed with purpose: researching, establishing a common direction, creating deliverables, testing those deliverables, revising those deliverables,” Fricano explained. “The team I worked with was fantastic—from the volunteers to the team from Camp Roger, they made the time we spent really inspiring and educational, while also making it a lot of fun.”

The Executive Director of Camp Roger, Doug Vanderwell, said he was so thankful for the opportunity to participate in GR GiveCamp. “It was so cool to see our hopes and dreams sketched out on a sheet of paper become a reality in 48 hours. It was fantastic!”


Carlton Bennett and Eric Nelson stayed in good spirits during the 48-hour coding event.

Developers Jeff Yin, Carlton Bennett, and Eric Nelson worked with the nonprofit Warriors Set Free to create a website to help people understand the organization’s mission. Their experience building HTML pages and working with CSS styling was well suited for this project.

“I was excited to volunteer with GR GiveCamp, and use the skills I’ve acquired in my career to give back to my community,” Yin said. “I made a small contribution to a local organization whose mission is definitely worthwhile, I met some other local developers and I got to meet someone leading the charge to provide resources for returning soldiers. Overall, a very good experience.”

All of the developers agreed the weekend “getaway” was very rewarding, and they are ready to give again next year.

LeanLogistics would like to thank Dan VeenKamp, Jeff Yin, Carlton Bennett, Eric Nelson, Mike Hartung, and Derek Fricano for volunteering their time and talent to GR GiveCamp. 

Posted in Blog
Tagged coding, developers, donating time, giving back, LeanLogistics, Supply Chain

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