Israeli developers participate in ‘Code4Ukraine’

The hackathon judged participants on their ability to develop the best humanitarian technology to assist Ukrainian refugees.

 Guesty VP Michael Kalika, Irma Shlosberg, Irina Lazebnik, Elya Livshitz, Tal Tordzman and Ella Medina at the 'Code4Ukraine' hackathon. (photo credit: COURTESY OF GUESTY)
Guesty VP Michael Kalika, Irma Shlosberg, Irina Lazebnik, Elya Livshitz, Tal Tordzman and Ella Medina at the 'Code4Ukraine' hackathon.
(photo credit: COURTESY OF GUESTY)

70 Israeli tech developers participated in the “Code4Ukraine” launch event in honor of Ukrainian refugees on Thursday.

The hackathon-style event judged participants on their ability to develop the best humanitarian technology – with the aim of having their tech assist incoming Ukrainian refugees adapt to their new realities amid new difficulties brought upon by war.

Developers from Israel, Israelis living in Berlin, and Ukrainians working in high-tech who recently became refugees were all invited to take part by the event organizer Elya Livshitz – a group manager at the Israeli high-tech company Guesty.

In the midst of Russia’s full-scale onslaught of Ukraine, Livshitz – whose company employs 50 developers from Ukraine – decided to harness the talents and abilities of Guesty employees and developers from other companies to assist Ukrainian refugees suddenly faced with the challenge of integrating into new countries and cultures.

 Ukrainian refugees at the border with Poland, March 1, 2022.  (credit: Zvika Klein) Ukrainian refugees at the border with Poland, March 1, 2022. (credit: Zvika Klein)

The "Friends In Israel" team took the first-place award in the event, with their app that connects new immigrants with Israeli families in order to ease their integration into Israeli society.

The second-place project, which was led by Ukrainian refugee Alisa Vysoky’s SAFEWAY team, developed a platform to connect Ukrainian women with volunteers and local social organizations around the world.

“We are proud of Elya’s initiative and the broad mobilization of developers to find solutions to help Ukrainians during this difficult time,” said Amiad Soto, CEO of Guesty. “As a company with a substantial part of its development team located in Ukraine, we have been mobilizing to help our employees from the first moment.”

Israeli high-tech companies Kaltura, Salesforce, Sid Israel - the Association for International Development, and the Israeli Council for Volunteering, all joined the hackathon event. The groups developed technologies developed aimed at assisting refugees suffering from anxiety, housing placement, and other issues brought onto them by the invasion of Ukraine.

“We are happy to expand assistance options to the significant number of refugees now scattered around the world," Soto concluded.