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North Royalton High School Student Wins 2019 Congressional App Challenge
Rep. Anthony Gonzalez made the announcement earlier this month that North Royalton High School sophomore Pankti Mehta and her teammate, Arin, are the winners of the Congressional App Challenge (CAC) in Ohio’s 16th district. Humanity Helper is an app that will help users locate opportunities and fundraising needs in their community.  

They said that they were “truly passionate about making a positive difference through their knowledge in STEM, and were inspired to do their bit for the nonprofit organizations (NPO) that selflessly devote invaluable time and energy for the upliftment of others.” The app’s purpose is to help organizations gain support, and it is intended for individuals that would like to make a positive change in their community. 

“While there are numerous nonprofits that are in need for resources, a lack of resources should not be what is holding them back from what they strive for,” said Mehta.  This is what inspired them to design an app to help these organizations.

With so many people willing to support NPOs and a huge number of NPOs in need for this support, they want to continue developing their app to bridge the gap between the two, which would be tremendously beneficial for everyone involved. To initiate this idea, they designed a console app program in C# to act as a survey to provide the user with volunteering/donating opportunities for the cause that the user was most passionate about. However, the function of a survey on a larger scale would be ineffective, which is why they seek mentorship to implement the powerful technology of Big Data and to create a user-friendly portal that would serve almost as a ‘Linkedin’ but for NPOs and community members. 

“In high school, many times students will volunteer just to fulfill service hours or for the sake of college applications,” said Mehta. “By creating an app like this, my hope is that students can match their passions with related nonprofit foundations and not volunteer just for the sake of volunteering, but because they genuinely want to make a positive difference in their community.”

You can watch a behind the scenes explanation of the Humanity Helper here:   Mehta is looking for a mentor specializing in computer science to help make her app fully functional. She has the ideas and concept, but needs a professional to help guide her to completion. If you’re interested in mentoring, here is a link to her project proposal: She could be reached at [email protected].