#SidnetDonations: Kamil for Ukraine (through Polish Humanitarian Action)

As usual, on the 15th day of each month, one of Sidnet’s team members picks an open‑source project and a charity initiative for us to support with a donation. In March we continue to do so, with one exception to that rule due to the current situation in Ukraine. At the request of our Full‑Stack Developer Kamil Głuszak, this time we won’t contribute to an open‑source venture and make a double donation to the Polish Humanitarian Action fundraiser

On March 24th we woke up to the new reality, overwhelmed by the reports of Russian aggression against Ukraine. The news about the military attack on the neighboring country was even more alarming for us. One of our remote developers was still living and working in Ukraine at the moment. Currently, our Ukrainian friend and his family are in a safe place we arranged for them in Warsaw.

Within twenty-four hours Polish people responded to this catastrophic situation. Our Ukrainian brothers and sisters received immediate humanitarian aid for their war-torn country. We decided to give our share too. We have contributed with individual subsidies, by supporting the “Hello Girls!” initiative on the occasion of Women’s Day. Today we donate to the Polish Humanitarian Action at the request of Kamil.

“Nothing is as urgent as support for Ukraine at this moment,” explains Kamil, “everything else seems lesser right now.”

Polish Humanitarian Action has been operating in Ukraine since 2014. Currently, it focuses on providing its citizens with food, clothing, health, and hygiene products. PHA also arranged the refugee help hubs at the Polish-Ukrainian border and psycho-social support centers in eastern Ukraine.

To support our Ukrainian friends in need, PHA informs on its activities and day‑to‑day situation via social media.

#SidnetDonations: Piotrek for NestJS and Ariana Wasiak (ZOBACZ MNIE Foundation beneficiary)

For several months, our thoughts have been with Ariana, a girl who has a medulloblastoma. She is the one‑year‑old daughter of a cousin of Michał Staszewski, who is responsible for sales in our team. Michał encouraged us to make individual donations and make our #SidnetDonation for February earlier, in January. Today, we can celebrate the fact that together with other donors we managed to achieve the fundraiser goal and the girl has already started treatment.

In February, the recipients of our donations (including Ariana) are chosen by Piotrek Zieliński, our Full‑Stack Developer who is always ready to discover new technologies.

NestJS

A back‑end JavaScript framework developed in Poland as a modern alternative to the Node.jsExpress framework. It combines the concepts of object-oriented, functional, and functional reactive programming.

‘NestJS is built around TypeScript, dependency injection, and modularity. These notions are associated for example with Angular. Someone who does not know these terms may need more time to start working with Nest, but these concepts are definitely worth exploring,’ says Piotrek.

Like Angular, NestJS imposes an application architecture that makes it easier to write scalable, maintainable, and testable code.

Ariana Wasiak (ZOBACZ MNIE Foundation beneficiary)

The story of Ariana—a one-year-old girl with a brain stem tumor—has touched so many people that in less than two months they managed to raise over $2 million (!) for treatment in the United States. Ever since the diagnosis was made in December, our little fighter has undergone 8 operations and is now receiving chemotherapy.

‘I can’t even imagine what the parents of 11‑month‑old Ariana felt when they heard the diagnosis: malignant tumor. I’m happy that we contributed to the success of the fundraiser for a treatment which could not be administered in Poland,’ says our programmer.

The fundraiser is over, but restoring the girl’s health entails additional unplanned costs, such as the replacement of a valve. The account number and KRS (National Court Register) number needed to donate 1% of your tax can be found on the website of the ZOBACZ MNIE Foundation.

#SidnetDonations: Mariusz for Strapi and Hospicjum Światło (Light Hospice) Association

New year’s edition of the #SidnetDonations initiative reminds us in a painful way of being aware and reacting before it’s too late.

This month’s selection of open‑source and non‑profit projects has been made by Mariusz Różański. He’s a Lead Developer based in Toruń and working on projects for our British clients: THG and UK2, belonging to the same group.

Strapi

An open-source headless CMS that allows you to create websites with the separation of the front-end and back-end layers. It works with different types of databases (non‑relational, relational). CMS can be easily integrated with the most popular JavaScript frameworks, such as React, Angular, Vue, but developers can also create their own interfaces.

Which of the Strapi features are particularly useful for Mariusz?

  • Intuitiveness. The CMS is clear and easy to use.
  • Flexibility. Strapi allows developers to use many non-standard components on the website, and easily create new ones by themselves.
  • Developer‑centric. The software offers a rich base of elements ready to use, that significantly speed up work in harmony with the ‘developer‑first’ principle.

“I had the opportunity to use Strapi for commercial projects and I must admit that I had a great time working with it, and most importantly, the customers are very satisfied with the effects,” says Mariusz.

Hospicjum Światło (Light Hospice) Association

Our January donation wasn’t meant to be received by the association in Toruń as a whole. It was intended for one of its beneficiaries, Maciej Kowalczyk—a longtime hospice volunteer and a favorite hairdresser of Mariusz’s wife. Sadly, Maciej passed away at the beginning of this year before we had a chance to show him our support and encourage others to do it.

“Although we did not have a chance to support Maciek and his relatives in their struggle with the disease under the #SidnetDonations initiative, many chronically ill people are still under the care of the association, for whom our help will be worth its weight in gold. That is why I decided to choose this organization,” says our developer.

The main goal of the Light Hospice Association is to care for terminally ill residents and their families. Hospice volunteers improve the quality of life of ill and dependent patients. They do it in place and through free home visits of medical guardians, physiotherapists, and psychologists.

#SidnetDonations: Wojtek for PHP Foundation and Magda Rejman (The Children’s Future Foundation beneficiary)

At Sidnet, we help on a daily basis, not only on special occasions. In December, we carry on with this practice and support the projects chosen by Wojtek Wąsik. Wojtek has been a member of our team for over 4 years now as a Senior Full‑Stack Developer and is currently working on a project for our British e‑commerce client, THG. It is not the first time that Wojtek takes the opportunity to select the projects to support as part of the #SidnetDonations initiative. And again, his choice was very personal.

Take a look at open‑source and charity projects that will receive financial support this month thanks to Wojtek’s choices.

PHP Foundation

The core mission of the newly established foundation is to modernize one of the most popular programming languages—PHP—which is the base for over 78% of all websites.

Why did Wojtek decide to endow this particular project? “It is the very first programming language I have learned. It was over 18 years ago, and I have been using it ever since. I am glad that PHP has a chance to be given a new life”, explains our developer.

The establishment of the PHP foundation was rushed by the “bus factor”. After 10 years of developing the language core, Nikita Popov—a key PHP developer, has decided to focus on a different project, the development of the LLVM compiler.  

In the first two years of its operation, the Foundation aims to create regular job positions for the language core developers and provide them with competitive pay financed by donations.

Magda Rejman (The Children’s Future Foundation beneficiary)

The charity chosen by Wojciech to receive our financial aid is fundraising for the treatment of 13‑year‑old Magda Rejman, who is struggling with the health consequences of type C lymphoblastic leukemia.

The decision to support the girl is very personal to Wojtek. “Magda is my cousin’s daughter”, explains our developer.

Currently, the disease is in remission. Magda is slowly recovering from the illness, but she still requires constant medical care, including immunity‑supporting drugs and costly rehabilitation. In order to arrange the necessary help and funds, Magda joined The Children’s Future Foundation a few years ago and still remains under its care. At the moment, the Foundation helps 450 children in need of constant medical assistance.

If you wonder how you can support the Foundation, here’s what you can do:

  • Join the volunteers coordinating the fundraisers.
  • Make a donation.
  • Run your own fundraiser.
  • Take part in activities held by the Foundation, such as collecting plastic bottle caps.
  • Talk with your employers about how they can support the Foundation.
  • Take part in run races organized by a Foundation’s charity running team.

#SidnetDonations: Łukasz for Pi‑hole and the Kundelek Animal Shelter

If not for the fact that the majority of the Sidnet team prefer remote work, we could consider opening a new branch in Rzeszów. A total of 15% of our dispersed team live there. The trend began with Łukasz Leszczyński, who joined us in 2019 as a Perl Developer, and is currently fulfilling himself by programming in Go in a project for THG, one of our long‑term clients.

Check what open‑source and charity projects will receive financial aid thanks to Łukasz’s choices.

Pihole

An open‑source app for blocking online ads and web trackers at the network level. Designed for Raspberry Pi, Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora, and CentOS.

“Corporations are carefully polishing their content delivery algorithms and matching ads to have an increasing influence on our choices. Since I’ve been using Pi‑hole, I can take a break from ads. The application works as a home DNS serverit filters the traffic and blocks it when an attempt is made to deliver ad content,” says Łukasz.

Why will every Linux geek like Pi‑hole?

  • Network protection in one installation. There is no need to install plugins in every browser and device.
  • Blocking ads outside the browser. Pi‑hole blocks ad content inside any application, e.g. on a smartphone or Smart TV.
  • Improved network performance. Ads are blocked even before they are downloaded.

Kundelek Animal Shelter

The shelter in Rzeszów takes care of more than 150 homeless cats and dogs. Since 2005 the shelter has been helping lost and abandoned animals, as well as those taken away from irresponsible owners. The shelter employees accompany the pets and new owners through the adoption process. They provide free animal health checks in a partner clinic.

In addition to donations, the shelter accepts help measured in cuddles. It organizes such campaigns as “An hour with a homeless dog” and “Cat caress”.

“Some time ago my girlfriend asked if we could walk a dog from a shelter. I was very skeptical, afraid to face suffering and lonely animals. Fortunately, it turned out that the dogs live in good conditions thanks to the shelter staff and people of good will,” explains our programmer.

#SidnetDonations: Marcin for Wikimedia Foundation and Doctors Without Borders

For October we financially support projects that touch on fundamental human rights: the right to information and to live a healthy life. This is the first time that open‑source and non‑profit initiatives have been selected by Marcin Wierzbicki – a Backend Go Developer working daily from the seaside.

Check which projects will receive our support as requested by Marcin.

Wikimedia Foundation

A non‑profit organization developing Wikipedia – one of the 10 most popular websites in the world, among other things. The purpose of the foundation is to protect the right to inform and to be informed as set out in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The project goes far beyond a “free encyclopedia” – Wikimedia works against censorship, educates governments, and promotes free licenses.

“I think all of us have used one of the services offered by Wikimedia at least once. In addition to Wikipedia, the foundation also takes care of other projects related to archiving and sharing knowledge, so that it is always available for free to billions of people. The donations received by the foundation not only translate into maintenance and development of the sites, but also support content creators through grants, training, or legal protection,” explains our developer.

The idea of wiki (knowledge resources) borrowed from the creators of Wikipedia accompanies us every day at Sidnet. In our corporate knowledge bases we collect and update project objectives, the technologies used, good practices, and much other useful information.

Doctors Without Borders (Médecins Sans Frontières)

An international medical humanitarian organization founded in 1971. It brings aid in the face of armed conflict, epidemics, natural disasters, and refugee crises. It has a presence in areas affected by protracted and complex crises, including Syria, Yemen, South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Nigeria, and Afghanistan.

“In too many parts of the world, people’s right to life and health care are still being taken away simply because they are caught up in a larger conflict. Doctors Without Borders, despite the risks, provides medical care to those in need in such places,” says Marcin.

To learn more about the challenges faced by Doctors Without Borders, listen to the Everyday Emergency podcast.