Project of social benefit award
The Award for Projects of Social Benefit is presented to the project or team responsible for applying free software, or the ideas of the free software movement, in a project that intentionally and significantly benefits society in other aspects of life.
We look to recognize projects or teams that encourage people to cooperate in freedom to accomplish social tasks. A long-term commitment to one's project (or the potential for a long-term commitment) is crucial to this end.
This award stresses the use of free software in the service of humanity. We have deliberately chosen this broad criterion so that many different areas of activity can be considered. However, one area that is not included is that of free software itself. Projects with a primary goal of promoting or advancing free software are not eligible for this award (we honor individuals working on those projects with our annual Award for the Advancement of Free Software).
We will consider any project or team that uses free software or its philosophy to address a goal important to society. To qualify, a project must use free software, produce free documentation, or use the idea of free software as defined in the Free Software Definition. Projects that promote or depend on the use of non-free software are not eligible for this award. Commercial projects are not excluded, but commercial success is not our scale for judging projects.
In 2015, Reglue received the award, in recognition of its work to give GNU/Linux computers to underprivileged children and their families in Austin, TX. Since 2005, Reglue has given over 1,100 computers to these children and their families. Reglue's strategy diverts computers from the waste stream, gives them new life with free software, and puts them in the hands of people who need these machines to advance their education and gain access to the Internet. Founder Ken Starks accepted the award on behalf of Reglue.
Previous winners have included GNOME Outreach Program for Women, OpenMRS, GNU Health, Tor, the Internet Archive, Creative Commons, Groklaw, the Sahana project, and Wikipedia.