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Author here. Just a few technical notes about the site:

This was my first Angular project. I had done Knockout, Durandal, and classic server-rendered web apps before, but this was my first stab with Angular. I liked it, and now use Angular for most of my projects.

I used TypeScript and found the classes to work great with Angular's controllers.

C# and MS SQL on the backend, hosted on Azure.

On the site, youth can subscribe to get emails or text messages when a bed becomes available. For this, we use SendGrid and Twilio.

We're using a custom Bootstrap theme for the UI. This enabled us to easily make the site responsive, which was a major goal since most homeless youth have phones but not desktops.

The project was commissioned by Youth Service Network, a group of youth shelters in Minnesota, with grant money supplied by Microsoft and Target. Microsoft provided free Azure credits to host the site.

SendGrid and Twilio both got involved in the project and offered a large amount of free credits. Kudos to them for that.




God bless you man. Great project. Any way others can donate time, code, or $ to the cause of eradicating youth poverty, hunger and homelessness?


poverty, hunger, and houselessness of all ages is an admirable problem to work against! :)


Native Minnesotan here,

I was homeless at one point in my life, so this kind of hit close to home (no pun intended). Thank you for making this as great as you did.


Can you sort the search pages (like http://ysnmn.org/#/shelter) to display the shelters with available beds first? The first page of results I see lists some "No beds available" results before some with available beds.


This spec involves getting the shelters to update availability. That can be a tough deal; going on some web site is the last thing on a shelter manager's mind, esp. when they're full. But, maybe if this app gets popular enough the availability data could be crowdsourced (by shelter clients).


Great work and happy to see the support from all those corporations.

Agreeing with the others on the Minnesota label being needed on the site, but moreso - what do you think would be required to take this to other major cities? Is the limiting factor just data or is there more to it?

Aside: if this is still in active development, I'd be happy to offer some time on design & UX


Thank you! Super encouraging to hear the feedback.

Thanks for the offer for time on design and UX. It's ultimately up to the shelter network to continue with the next version of this app. I've got your email from your profile; I'll keep in touch.


Nothing would limit us from taking this to other cities. I'd suspect some minor technical changes. It's just how this effort was funded.




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