Author Archive Alex Castner

ByAlex Castner

New Feature: Nearest Neighbor Lookup

Grassroots Unwired has a released a new feature that we believe changes the game in helping your organization gain new supporters and it’s called Nearest Neighbor Lookup.

There is nothing more powerful than additional validation when it comes to getting new supporters to donate to your organization. When you knock on a potential supporters door, how do you let them know about others around them who have already joined your cause?

Read More

ByAlex Castner

Grassroots Unwired goes on tour

As a major band’s concert tour kicked off in Vancouver in May, then continued to travel through the US, Europe and South America, the ONE Campaign, the campaigning, and advocacy organization of nearly eight million people around the world, has been setting up shop at stadiums across North America to generate support from concertgoers in the fight against extreme poverty and preventable disease. To facilitate the actions taken by concertgoers, ONE has been traveling with the Grassroots Unwired mobile platform!

Concertgoers are asked their country of origin and based on their response are presented with a digital letter or petition that they are asked to sign. ONE loaded 13 different letters into the app and using GRU’s randomization technology, ensures that there are a variety of messages being delivered. We even give them the ability to customize each letter by allowing people to write a personal message within the text of the letter.

Those letters are then sent to a member of the U.S. Senate or another public official and all the data is added to the ONE’s ActionKit instance in real time.

ONE is dedicated to making a real difference around the globe and we couldn’t be prouder that they are using our tech to make their work more efficient and effective.

Request a meeting below to see how Grassroots Unwired can enhance your field program too!

ByAlex Castner

Human Rights Campaign: A Grassroots Unwired Client Spotlight

Use Case: Event-Based Member Recruitment and Grassroots Advocacy
The Challenge?

Online advocacy tools are ubiquitous. But what do you do at a huge outdoor social event where you can’t be in front of a computer and connectivity is always dicey plus the pace is super fast and you have multiple locations across the country at the same time?

Human Rights Campaign needed a solution to collect member and supporter information that was safe, secure, accurate, and available on a national level in real-time. It was also important that their new donors were followed-up with and thanked as soon as possible after the interaction at a Pride booth.

Grassroots Unwired worked with HRC to ensure that our platform met every need they had. The “off the chart” numbers they produced this past summer tell the story.
HRC has been using the Grassroots Unwired platform for their street canvassing efforts for about a year now. When the Pride team saw the awesome impact our tech was having on their canvassing numbers, they wanted in.

Use Case: Event-Based Member Recruitment and Advocacy

Between March and November of each year, HRC has a presence at 250 Pride events in 48 states, DC and Puerto Rico. Read More

ByAlex Castner

Vote for our NTEN Sessions

We are so pleased to report that we have submitted three amazing session ideas for NTEN’s NTC 2018. NTEN is the Non-Profit Technology Network which runs an annual conference that brings together a slew of people from all over the country who work for non-profits or the companies that support them. Since Grassroots Unwired makes a big impact on many nonprofits, we decided to step up and submit about the collaborative work with our clients.

We are excited to announce the following sessions are available for public voting. Voting has started and runs until Friday, September 1, 2017. The rules are that you have to create a login on the NTEN website in order to vote for us and you can only vote once.

Session #1: How Mobile Technology can help with social service outreach.

Session #2: Are you getting the most out of every public event you plan?

Session #3: How to build your sustainer base one door at a time.

If those links don’t work, head on over to In order to find the sessions, search for the keyword: Grassroots. We come up on the first one or two pages.

Can we count on your vote?

Contact us if you want to talk about the platform:

ByAlex Castner

May 2017 Grasshoots

Grassroots Unwired is built on the philosophy that mobile-first technology can be customized and utilized for the greater good. From helping progressive candidates win elections to empowering non-profit organizations working to save our environment, balance inequality and improve our communities, Grassroots Unwired bridges historical canvassing with groundbreaking technology.
We are transforming the way our clients galvanize support for their candidates and their causes.

Each month, we make two platform releases which include new features, custom programming for individual clients and improvements to existing features that benefit everyone using the platform. Recently, a release included an exciting new integration that we wanted to make sure you knew about.

New Feature Launch


  • One of the great strengths of the Grassroots Unwired platform is the ability we give our clients to seamlessly integrate other tools that they use for their advocacy efforts with the GRU platform.
  • ActionKit helps you organize online and we help you organize “offline.”
  • Now the data collected during F2F advocacy on the GRU platform, can be sent in real time to your ActionKit instance so your new supporters can become part of your outreach effort immediately.

More Integrations – Grassroots Unwired has several CRM integrations.

Contact Us to see if yours is supported.

Coming Soon
  • BYOP(rocessor) – If priority one for you is F2F fundraising, our donation capture and processing is better than any other mobile product on the market. Now we have opened up our platform to over 70 payment gateways to give you the most seamless payment experience possible.
Goings on in the Office
  • Last Month, Russ and Jordan headed down to DC for our inaugural appearance at NTEN’s 2017 NonProfit Technology Conference. That was fun. They talked with hundreds of non-profits about the platform and used our tech to collect petition signatures supporting Meals-on-Wheels and ultimately made a $250 donation.
  • We have four awesome interns coming on board for the summer. They are currently attending Penn State, Philadelphia University, Georgetown, and Temple, and we can’t wait to get them on board once the school year ends.
  • We’re also hiring on both the Sales and Tech side. Head on over to our Careers page and check them out. Please encourage any current college students you know to apply.

Thank you for taking the time to review our latest Grasshoots. For more information:

Request a meeting to learn more!

ByAlex Castner


Grassroots Unwired is pleased to announce that for the first time, we will be at NTEN’s Non-profit Technology Conference.

Come see what all the buzz is about our technology. We’ll be happy to show you in person how we can upgrade your face-to-face program or advocacy work with our amazing features.

Visit us at Booth 709

(by the Cafe)

See our mobile app in action and sign a petition telling Members of Congress to fully fund Meals-on-Wheels.

For every petition signed, Grassroots Unwired will make a donation to:

If you are not able to come see us in person, request a demo or sign-up for our newsletter.

Grassroots Unwired offers a mobile-first platform for nonprofits doing face-to-face outreach, advocacy, and fundraising. Reach people where they are, capture everything, and grow your movement.

ByAlex Castner

Bar Codes and You

The Ballot Initiative Strategy Center held its annual conference in Las Vegas last week and Grassroots Unwired participated in the New Tools Shoutout where 16 organizations vied for the prize of Best New Tool from 2016.

Using a real-life use case from Fieldworks, we won the hearts and minds of the audience and emerged victorious with a sweet new water bottle as the prize.

Petition drives can be about so much more then getting on the ballot – if you have the right tools. Use our Barcode tool to tie the Petition signer back to the form they signed along with the GPS location and time that the signature was collected and the name of the canvasser who collected it.

Then leverage our tech to quickly collect more useful information that you can turn into real-time action:

  • Collect email addresses and cell phone numbers to instantly engage the signers after the interaction with customized SMS opt-ins and emails
  • Have them sign a digital pledge card that can be sent to them as a reminder closer to the election
  • Sign them up for volunteer opportunities and upcoming events
  • Protect your reputation and your effort with Quality Control metrics like:
    • Time on Turf for each canvasser
    • GPS and Time Stamps for each interaction
    • Length of time it takes to complete each survey

Now more then ever, ballot initiatives are a critical way to push your agenda and fight against legislative overreach. You want to know when, where and how every signature you get was collected and walk away with actionable data that will enhance your campaign efforts far beyond the petition drive.

Get in touch with us to learn how the Grassroots Unwired mobile platform can make this a reality for you and your organization.

[slideshare id=71868919&doc=barcodesandyou-170207155301]

ByAlex Castner

Grassroots Unwired Brings Unique Mobile Tech To the 2017 Homeless Census

Grassroots Unwired Brings Unique Mobile Tech To the 2017 Homeless Census

Official Press Release

Mobile software company Grassroots Unwired is teaming up with Continuums of Care (CoC) led by local non-profits to transition HUD’s (Housing and Urban Development) yearly homeless census from paper and clipboards to tablet powered mobile software. These “Point-in-Time” (PIT) counts typically take place late in January over one or several nights, and the results are used by HUD to determine funding levels for a community’s homeless advocacy problems.

The need for accurate data, collected efficiently was the driving force behind the technology built by Grassroots Unwired. Building on successful 2016 pilots in Houston and Philadelphia, Grassroots Unwired will be expanding its partnerships to areas in California and Indianapolis. In partnership with the Coalition for the Homeless in Houston, Project HOME and Valley Youth House in Philadelphia, Grassroots Unwired perfected a mobile app that allows volunteers to press and swipe answers to survey questions instead of fumbling with the a paper and clipboard at night.

This app not only digitizes the HUD driven survey but gives the site managers an ability to monitor volunteers who go on-site which helps insure safety and accurate data collection. The fact that the app works with or without a data connection means that volunteers can continue to do their work in low connectivity areas like subway stations.

After the count is over, days of manual data entry are eliminated because all the data collected in the field is databased in real time the night of the count. And with paper, there was always the possibility of a poorly written survey leading to disqualifying an individual from the count. Communities could lose large sums of public funding if their Homeless census data is not accurate.

HUD requires this data to be reported in order to determine public funding that gets provided to each community to support public programs. Non-Profits will train and send volunteers to Emergency Shelters; Transitional Housing Units; Rapid Re-housing Programs; Safe Haven’s; and Permanent Supportive Housing Programs along with known areas where unsheltered individuals live to perform the surveys. While the survey has some standard questions required by HUD, many non-profits offer additional services and use the customizable nature of the platform to design scripts that are specific to their own programs.

For Grassroots Unwired, the ability to build technology that can make a social impact is why the company was founded. Said CEO Russ Oster, “So many of these folks just need a helping hand. And if our technology, used by awesome organizations like Project Home, can speed up the delivery of that help, then we’re honored to be a part of the effort.”

ByAlex Castner

Sierra Club is using Grassroots Unwired to Generate Absentee Ballot Requests

We recently partnered with The Sierra Club’s Georgia Chapterwho has devised a plan to contact voters and make it easy for them to fill out an absentee ballot request form. Canvassers are going door-to-door, talking to people about  upcoming election choices and helping them with their voter plan. Unlike past cycles, this year they  made the switch from carrying around paper walk sheets and dozens of voter registration and absentee ballot request forms to our platform.

dsc_0244By using the Grassroots Unwired platform , canvassers can have voters fill out the absentee ballot request form on a tablet. They can even sign it digitally, and have it sent automatically to the appropriate county registrar’s office in Georgia. By switching to the Grassroots Unwired platform , ballot requests are more accurate and since the , the whole process is paperless, the data collected is saved securely in the database.

The ability to vote by absentee ballot is an essential part of modern elections. For those who  cannot get to the polls for health, work, or extended travel reasons, it allows them the opportunity to have their voices heard in elections ranging from local to national.

The collaboration between The Sierra Club and Grassroots Unwired has provided a possibly underserved or marginalized voter group with an opportunity for both personal contact to learn about their choices and a chance to take action on issues that might be to interest to them sponsored by the Sierra Club.

ByAlex Castner

Get More From Your Canvassing Effort

At it’s core, the Grassroots Unwired platform gives you real time accountability and efficiency.

But there’s so much more that clients get out of it:

  • Conserve: No more printing paper lists
  • Email Relay: Collect an email address at a door and have a customized email sent from the campaign immediately
  • Content at the Door: Got a new TV ad or mail piece you want to make sure voters see? Just load it on to Canvasser phones
  • Social Media: Integrate your canvassing activities with your campaigns social media outlets
  • Election Day: Real-time check-off app

We’ll even supply your campaign with smartphones or tablets so you dont have to worry about hardware or data plans—just open the box and start your canvass.