The Season of Giving: Rebrand LA and WordPress offers chance to help small businesses

Last week, I was able to participate in a charity hackathon between ReBrand Cities, the City of Los Angeles, and Automattic (the company behind WordPress), satisfying an urge to give.
Joe working with James Dongo of Nana's Catering during ReBrand LA charity hackathon.
Joe working with James Dongo of Nana's Catering during ReBrand LA charity hackathon.

Last week, I was able to participate in a charity hackathon between ReBrand Cities, the City of Los Angeles, and Automattic (the company behind WordPress), satisfying an urge to give and checking another box on my personal goal list. I always struggle during the holidays, wanting to do for others rather than getting gifts.

Go Back Jack, Do It Again

ReBrand LA, whose mission is to help small businesses nationwide by creating 10,000 websites held the event at Vector 90 in central Los Angeles. A sleek, coworking space in a former large scale bread bakery, almost twenty businesses worked with a team of developers to get them up and running on WordPress.com.

“46% of Small Businesses in America have no website.”

ReBrand Cities

When I first arrived in Los Angeles in 1989, I lived near this location in Mid-City and it felt like going home again in a number of aspects. The city has changed quite a bit but helping area small businesses felt right.

Small Issue, Big Reward

The day started with an inspiring opening by Hajj, a gifted and passionate speaker. We then paired up with our businesses, identifying their current challenges and setting out a plan to get them onto WordPress.com and resolving pain points from their previous hosting solutions.

I worked with James Dongo of Nana’s Catering LA and initially, Internet connection issues delayed our progress. Being resourceful, a representative from the City of Los Angeles offered her hotspot to the team and we were off! We wrapped up the day with a show and tell of a couple of sites that provided inspiration for the others moving forward.

A Little Birdy Told Me

A full day of activity and great memories, here are some additional backstory on the event on Twitter:

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