From October 1–31, we’re once again partnering with DigitalOcean and Twilio for Hacktoberfest—a month-long event celebrating the open source community by encouraging developers to contribute to open source projects. This year, we’re also partnering with and highlighting several projects using open source to make the world a better place. We hope you’ll join us in supporting this socially impactful work by contributing to these projects:


Alex makes sure your writing is considerate by catching potential insensitive phrasing.

Alex example output

Support needed:

  • Website and documentation help on, including new phrases to catch and improved messages for the words they already catch
  • Translation, including possibilities to translate the project into languages other than English or support HTML alongside Markdown and plain-text

Contributor level: Beginner to advanced

REFUGE Restrooms

REFUGE restrooms indexes and maps safe restroom locations for trans, intersex, and gender-nonconforming individuals.

Refuge restrooms website

Support needed:

  • Multiple areas. The team is looking for help with tasks of all sizes. As an all volunteer open source project, there are plenty of opportunities.

Contributor level: Beginner to advanced


The GliaX project is making health care accessible to everyone, everywhere. They use the newest in tech to make high-quality open source medical devices and increase availability to those who need them.

Support needed:

  • Usability improvements, including improvements to the stethoscope, otoscope, and tourniquet devices
  • Engineering and firmware, including help for the pulse oximeter and electrocardiogram devices

Contributor level: Advanced


HospitalRun aims to improve access to medical care for some of the most vulnerable patients in the world by improving the software tooling that hospital administrators in charitable hospitals use to facilitate care.

Support needed:

  • Bug fixes
  • Feature development in Ember.js

Contributor level: Intermediate to advanced with knowledge of Ember.js

if me

If me is an open source, not-for-profit mental health web app that encourages people to share their experiences with loved ones and trusted allies.

Support needed:
The team recently redesigned their app, so there are opportunities to refactor code and improve performance, usability, and accessibility.

  • Blog support
  • Community organization
  • App translation
  • Feature improvements

Contributor level: Beginner to advanced


Talk is an open source commenting platform focused on better conversation, brought to you by Mozilla, The Washington Post, and The New York Times.

Support needed:

  • Moderation features like new searching and filtering capabilities or custom moderation queues
  • Commenting features like new reactions, new badges, or adding translations
  • Features ranging from adding or changing CSS on the frontend to adding custom plugins and API/backend enhancements

Contributor level: Beginner to advanced

Humanitarian OpenStreetMap

Through local people, local tools, and open knowledge, the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team works to provide open map data and tools to revolutionize disaster management, reduce risks, and address the world’s toughest challenges. When major disaster strikes anywhere in the world, thousands of volunteers come together online and on the ground to create open map data that enables disaster responders to reach those in need.

Support needed:

  • Documentation
  • User-experience improvements
  • Application performance improvements

Contributor level: Beginner to advanced


OptiKey is an on-screen keyboard designed to help Motor Neuron Disease (MND) patients interact with Windows computers. OptiKey seeks to allow anyone to use their computer fully with only head or eye movements. Never should someone with a disability have to pay for the ability to speak to their loved ones and stay in touch with the world around them.

Support needed:

  • Bug fixes
  • Technical support for extending OptiKey with new features

Contributor level: Beginner to advanced

Join the Community Forum Challenge

In addition to inviting you to contribute to these open source projects, we’re hosting a challenge in the GitHub Community Forum where you can get recognition for contributing to projects from the Social Impact Collection during Hacktoberfest. For more information on the challenge or to sign up today, please head over to the challenge home page.

Those who complete the challenge by 11:59pm PT on October 31 will receive a limited edition badge on their Community Forum profile in recognition of their achievement and to thank them for helping projects make a positive impact.