The contest is called Project Reach, and the goal is to create an app that will provide the homeless community with real-time information on shelters that have open beds, nearby soup kitchens, and social and medical services. The creator of the chosen app will win $25, 000.
"Ladies and gentlemen who've fallen down the socio-economic ladder just don't know how to access these social services. And there are people like me who want to help, but don't know in real time whether there are beds available," Bon Jovi said during a press conference call.
Jon Bon Jovi has always used his wide influence to give back to the community, particularly in the battle against homelessness, and since becoming a member of the White House Council for Community Solutions in 2010, he has undertaken several major projects. His community restaurant, Soul Kitchen, in Red Bank, NJ, opened less than a year ago on October 19, 2011 and has already fed thousands of homeless. This has also served as the inspiration for his most recent venture, Project Reach.
When Bon Jovi discovered that one of his employees at the Soul Kitchen was homeless he set out to help him by looking to the Internet for resources. "We wanted to help, but we didn't have real-time information," Jovi said of the incident. Upon realization that there was an extreme lack of helpful information online, Jovi began working with the White House to fill the void. He hopes that with the technology they will "defeat veteran homelessness by 2015."